What to Do in a Gas Leak Emergency
As far as emergencies go, a gas leak has the chance to be the most dangerous. The risk of fire – or even explosion – further highlights the severity.
This is why it is incredibly beneficial to know what to look out for, and what to do during an emergency gas leak.
Homeowners are responsible for gas work inside their property. This includes gas appliances such as heaters or ovens, pipework from the meter and any flues or ducts. So when there is a leak it is often up to you to contact a licensed gas fitter for emergency repairs and to look out for yourself in the meantime.
Mr Emergency can be your first choice contact in an emergency, and we will provide rapid 1 hour* response.
We can also help you prepare for a gas leak emergency with the following information on what to look out for, and the exact steps you should take.
The Signs of a Gas Leak
If you are unsure about what to look out for, just keep reading.
Damaged or Hissing Pipes
Physical signs of damage are the clearest sign. Watch out for any broken pipes, holes, etc. Also, you could certainly hear hissing or whistling as the gas escapes pipework.
Rotten Egg Smell
An instantly recognisable scent, natural gas has a rotten egg, sulphur-like odour to it. The chemical, known as Mercaptan, is added to gas so there is a way to easily detect a leak. Often you will pick up the scent while walking past a gas meter, however, if you do notice it inside that is a real cause for concern.
Health Side Effects
Harmful side effects of a gas leak include:
- Fatigue/muscle soreness
- Breathing difficulty/coughing
In the worst case, prolonged exposure can lead to long term issues. If you do notice any of the above, please see a GP or doctor.
Without a regular gas supply, pilot lights and also exposed flames on a gas burner or heater will likely be weakened. They will be more orange or yellow than a strong hot blue flame.
Plants will also be susceptible to higher gas levels, and long term exposure will cause them to die. Look out for gradual changes to the health of your plants, inside and outside.
What to Do If You Smell Gas
When you smell gas or believe there are accurate signs of a leak, a fast response is essential. It could quite literally save lives. If you suspect a gas leak be sure to do the following:
- Turn off gas appliances such as heaters or hot water systems (including the pilot light)
- Shut off the gas supply at the meter (often located at the front of the property, or side of the house)
- Open doors and windows throughout the home for ventilation
- Call Mr Emergency for a licensed gas fitter
Can Gas Cause an Explosion: Worst Case Scenarios
It is also incredibly important you do not light any flames or use anything which could cause a spark. High levels of gas are combustible and the smallest flame or ignition source may lead to serious danger.
That includes fire or an explosion.
Fast action will save you, literally. Contact Mr Emergency when you believe there is a leak, and we can provide rapid gas leak detection to find the source of the fault, and repair it.
All gas repairs should be conducted by a licensed gas fitter, and so you should never attempt a repair on your own.
Meanwhile, if the leak or any damage is found between the meter or street mains you can call the Gas Leaks and Emergency services on 1800 GAS LEAK (1800 427 532).
Contact us for more information on our gas fitting services.