Hydrocarbons Detector Dog


In recognition of the seriousness of the problem of oil leaks from buried high voltage electricity cables, the Electricity Council of Great Britain funded a research programme in the 1980s to develop an accurate, rapid and reliable leak locator method. Following consultation with the British Ministry of Defence, the London Metropolitan Police and the private sector, the Electricity Council awarded the contract to Karenswood (International) Ltd.

The Company successfully demonstrated that dogs have the ability to detect minute quantities of the vapour from the cable dielectric and to separate the odour from that of other hydrocarbons that might be present in city streets. Hydrocarbons Detector Dogs are successful in locating leaks regardless of ground types, paved or unpaved areas, and in all weather conditions, including rain and snow. 

Some of the Karenswood Hydrocarbons Detector Dog finds have been spectacular. At Northolt, for example, a yellow Labrador located an oil leak which was six feet under a tarmac and concrete carriageway at a roundabout on a very busy trunk road (where many other hydrocarbons were present).