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RG&E, NYSEG remind customers of gas safety tips

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Wed, Sep 11th 2019 03:45 pm

Guest editorial by RG&E and NYSEG

RG&E and NYSEG, subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc., want to remind customers to rely on their senses when detecting a natural gas leak. Pipelines are statistically the safest way to transport energy products like natural gas. However, a malfunction involving attached equipment or damage could create a gas leak.

It’s important for customers to know the warning signs to protect themselves, their families, homes and businesses. If undetected, gas leaks can put people’s lives in danger, cause significant damage, are costly, and can interrupt essential utility service.

A natural gas leak is usually recognized by smell, sight, or sound.

  • Smell: If customers smell natural gas, they should immediately get up, get out, and call for help from a safe location. Natural gas is colorless and odorless. For safety, a distinctive sulfur-like odor, similar to rotten eggs, is added so that customers can recognize it quickly.
  • Sight: A white cloud, mist, fog, bubbles in standing water or blowing dust are also warning signs of a gas leak. Customers may also see vegetation that appears to be dead or dying for no apparent reason.
  • Sound: A gas leak is usually detected by hearing an unusual noise like roaring, hissing, or whistling.

RG&E and NYSEG offer these tips on what customers should do if they suspect a natural gas leak:

  • Get up, get out, and get away! Then immediately call RG&E at 1-800-743-1702, NYSEG at 1-800-572-1121, or 911 from a safe location.
  • Do not smoke or operate electrical switches or appliances. These items may produce a spark that might ignite the natural gas and cause an explosion.
  • Do not assume someone else will report the condition.
  • Provide the exact location, including cross streets.
  • Let us know if sewer construction or digging activities are going on in the area.

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