What To Do In An Emergency

It is important that you know how to recognize a pipeline leak and what to do, and not to do, if there is one. Below are some basic rules.

Natural gas emergencies in your home or workplace:

If you notice the distinctive “rotten egg” smell of odorized natural gas, follow these DO’s and DO NOT’s.

DO NOT!
  • Start an engine of any kind;
  • Strike matches or create a flame of any kind;
  • Use a telephone or cell phone (these can ignite airborne gases);
  • Turn on or off any light switches, garage door openers or other electrical switches (these also can ignite airborne gases).
DO
  • Make sure gas appliances are turned all the way OFF;
  • Leave the area;
  • Telephone 911 from a neighbor’s house or other location well away from the gas leak;
  • Explain the situation;
  • Warn others — if it is safe to do so — against entering the leak area and/or creating ignition sparks.

Recognizing emergencies near a pipeline right of way:

Remember that pipelines carry both gases and hazardous liquids. Along a right-of-way, you may see dead or discolored vegetation, pooled liquid; or a cloud of vapor or mist. You may smell an unusual odor, or the scent of petroleum or odorized natural gas. And you may hear an unusual hissing or roaring sound.

If you suspect a pipeline leak has occurred:

DO NOT!
  • Touch, breathe or make contact with leaking liquids;
  • Start an engine of any kind;
  • Strike matches or create a flame of any kind;
  • Use a telephone or cell phone (these can ignite airborne gases);
  • Turn on or off any electrical switches (these also can ignite airborne gases);
  • Drive into a leak or vapor cloud area.
DO
  • Make sure gas appliances are turned all the way OFF;
  • Leave the area;
  • Telephone 911 from a neighbor’s house or other location well away from the gas leak;
  • Explain the situation;
  • Warn others — if it is safe to do so — against entering the leak area and/or creating ignition sparks.