Natural Gas Safety

How to recognize a leak

Natural gas leaks are rare, but it’s important to know and be able to recognize the signs of a natural gas leak. We use our senses of sight, sound and smell to recognize natural gas leaks.

eyeYou may see a damaged connection to a gas appliance, a cracked pipe or meter, or flames at or near an exposed pipeline. You may see dirt blowing up from the ground, bubbling or spraying water at a pond or creek, or brown vegetation surrounded by a green field or lawn. These unusual sights could indicate a natural gas leak.

earYou may hear a hissing sound ­– like natural gas escaping from a cracked or broken pipe, or a damaged meter or connection.

noseYou may smell a rotten egg scent. Remember, natural gas has no odor, but a rotten egg odorant called mercaptan is added to help detect a natural gas leak. The bad smell helps you know there is a problem.

You may see, hear and/or smell a natural gas leak! Use your senses for safety! Be sure to read the next section “If you suspect a leak.”

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