Before the Storm
When preparing for a potential storm, you do not need to turn off your gas at your natural gas meter. In fact, we at DC Gas strongly recommend that customers never attempt to turn off their natural gas at the meter.
Unless natural gas service is interrupted during a storm, your tank-style natural gas water heater, stove, space heaters and grill should continue to operate normally.
When there is a loss of electricity, stoves, space heaters and grills that operate with an electronic igniter will need to be lit manually. It’s helpful to have matches on hand. Since you might need these appliances when you lose electricity, we recommend that you do not turn off your gas supply at the appliance either, unless you must evacuate your home or are expecting extensive storm damage.
During the Storm
Remain calm. Seek safe shelter from the storm. Never try to drive in a major storm. Do not check for damage to your home or business until the storm passes. Buildings can be replaced. You cannot.
After the Storm
When you return to your home or business after a storm has passed, be aware of potential natural gas hazards. We intentionally add an odorant to your natural gas supply so it is more detectable in case of a leak. The odor is distinct, much like the smell of rotten eggs.
If you smell natural gas inside your home or workplace, take action immediately:
Leave the property immediately, taking everyone in the structure with you. If it’s a multi-tenant building, alert all occupants.
Do not use electricity when leaving. This includes lights, light switches, cell phones, landline telephones or anything else that could ignite a spark.
Do not drive your vehicle even if it is parked outside in the driveway. Cars and trucks create a spark when started, and that spark could be an ignition source if there is a gas leak.
Go to a safe location away from the property and stay there. Do not inspect the property for damage or the source of the leak.
Call us at 256-845-3731 to report the leak. We monitor this line 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. Don’t assume that someone has reported the natural gas leak. DC Gas always checks suspected natural gas leaks at no charge to you. Our first priority is your safety.
Never try to repair a natural gas leak by yourself. Leave repairs to our trained staff, which is trained to respond quickly should you have an emergency.