If You Smell Gas/Propane

How to Recognize a Gas Leak:

Natural gas and propane in their original state are odorless, we add an organic compound called Mercaptan before the gas is delivered to your community. The compound has a distinctive smell like rotten eggs to alert you to the presence of natural gas or propane escaping in or around your home.

Natural gas pipelines have a proven record of safety. Sometimes, however, pipeline failure can occur. Hazards associated with a pipeline failure and gas release may include blowing gas, line rupture, fire, explosion or, if gas is present in a confined area, possible asphyxiation.

Damage by outside force, often by someone digging into a pipeline, is the largest single cause of pipeline failures. Incidents may occur due to corrosion, material failure, equipment failure or other causes.

The source of a gas odor could be inside your home from a leak in your house line or appliance connection. It could also be outside from leaks in a service or main line that could come into your home through foundation walls or drain lines.

Leak Recognition – Remember the three ways to recognize a natural gas or propane leak:

  1. SMELL: To help you SMELL a leak from a gas line or appliance, a familiar odor like rotten eggs is often added to natural gas and propane gas.
  2. SEE: Near a gas leak, you might SEE blowing dirt, bubbling water or an unusual area of dead vegetation.
  3. HEAR: A leaking pipeline might make a hissing sound you can HEAR.
  4. If you recognize even one of the above signs, walk away, right away.
  5. Don’t try to stop or repair the leak yourself or use anything that might create a spark, such as a cell phone.
  6. Avoid using potential ignition sources, such as telephones, doorbells, electric switches or motor vehicles.
  7. From a safe distance, call our emergency number at 1-800-255-6815 and then call 911.

What to Do If You Smell Gas:

  1. Leave the building or the area immediately.
  2. Don’t light matches, touch electrical switches, use the phone or start a motor vehicle.
  3. If you have propane, shut off your tank by turning the knob located under the blue dome clockwise.
  4. Call The Energy Cooperative 1-800-255-6815 from a phone that is not near the leak. Our employees are on call 24 hours a day to respond to emergencies.Call 911.
  5. Never try to extinguish a gas fire or operate any pipeline valves.
  6. Plan to meet our service person or provide access to your home to inspect your equipment and check for the source of the odor.

Be Prepared:

  1. Practice safety drills for getting your family out of the house at night before an emergency occurs. Don’t turn lights on or off.
  2. Don’t light matches or cigarette lighters.
  3. Don’t use a flashlight during the drill because an electric arc might ignite the gas.
  4. Don’t use the telephone or cell phone because an arc might ignite the gas.
  5. Plan what you’re going to do and move slowly and carefully.
  6. Practice the drill in the daylight first.
  7. Include the emergency telephone number for The Energy Cooperative (1-800-255-6815) on your list of important phone numbers (e.g. fire, police, physicians, etc.)