Natural Gas Leaks
- Indoor leaks. Evacuate the building immediately. Shut off the gas at the appliance’s supply line—or, if you cannot identify the leaking appliance, shut off gas at the meter. When you are certain the gas is off, ventilate by opening windows from the outside only. Never ventilate while personnel are inside.
- Outdoor leaks. Evacuate the area immediately. Contact the local natural gas utility immediately to shut off the gas. Never try to operate an underground pipeline or relief vent.
- Do not use spark-producing equipment. Intrinsically safe radios and flashlights should be used for the duration of any incident response.
- Avoid ignition hazards. Do not use doorbells, wall switches, garage door openers, and cell phones, and prevent their use by others.
- Do not step on door mats. Friction from your boots could create a spark of static electricity.
Recognizing Gas Leaks
There are several indicators of natural gas pipeline leaks:
- A sulfur-like odor
- A hissing sound
- Dirt spraying into the air
- Continual bubbling in a pond or creek
- Plants that seem to be dead or dying for no reason
Not all gas has been odorized, so do not attempt to detect a natural gas leak by smell alone.