This morning, my family dealt with a gas leak. Random people who were walking between my neighbor’s and my home would knock on the door to let us know that they smelled a gas leak. Luckily my husband was home and he called our gas company, Xcel Energy, to report the gas leak.
My husband already opened all the windows which made the home smell like gas. He eventually identified that the smell was definitely coming from between my neighbor’s and our home.
The person on the phone told us to not activate light switches or anything electrical that can cause a spark. During this time, I was texting my neighbor to let her know what was going on (I didn’t know that using a cell phone can cause a spark). My neighbor let me know that her husband was on his way home.
An hour had passed and Xcel Energy hadn’t arrived yet. My husband called Xcel to see if we needed to shut off the gas, and the lady on the phone told us to evacuate the home. We had the kids and dog go to the backyard, away from the home.
The Xcel Energy service guy found the leak which was coming from our neighbor’s gas line. There was a hissing noise which sounded like the sprinklers were on (apparently my husband heard this noise earlier but thought the sprinklers were on). The service guy turned off my neighbor’s gas line and will have to repair the line.
With that incident taken care of I wanted everyone to know what to do when you do smell a gas leak because what we did wasn’t entirely correct.
WHAT DO TO DO IF YOU SMELL A GAS LEAK
- Immediately leave your home with your family and pets.
- Open some windows before leaving the home
- Once you are safely outside, call the gas company to report the leak or call 911
IF YOU THINK YOU HAVE A GAS LEAK FOLLOW THESE TIPS: (YOU WANT TO PREVENT ANY SPARKS WHICH CAN IGNITE AN EXPLOSION)
- Do not turn on or off electrical switches
- Do not use electric appliances such as a garage door or telephones (including mobile phones), doorbells
- Do not start or shut down your car
- Do not light a match
- Do not go into your home until it is declared safe by the inspector
If you don’t know which gas company services your area, look it up online and look for your bill. You should put that information in your phone so you can call them when an emergency issue arises. It’s best to be prepared since you never know when you will need it.
Source: Xcel Energy Gas Emergencies