Public: What you need to know

What to Do in an Emergency

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Pipeline leaks are rare, but being able to recognize and respond to a suspected leak or rupture is an important part of living and working safely around underground pipelines. Your personal safety should be your first concern should you encounter any of these signs or conditions.

Signs of a natural gas pipeline RUPTURE:

  • Loud roaring or explosive sound; OR
  • Very large flames and loud roaring noise.

Follow these steps:

If there are no flames present:

  • Immediately evacuate the area
  • Do not start or turn off motor vehicles or electrical equipment (such as cell phones, pagers, two-way radios, or lights) as this could cause the gas to ignite
  • Abandon any equipment being used in or near the area
  • Move far enough away from the noise until you can have a normal conversation
  • Discourage others from entering the area
  • From this safe location, call 911 or contact the local fire department or law enforcement and
  • Notify the operator of the pipeline

If flames are present:

  • Move behind a structure that provides protection until there is a reduction in noise
  • Plan a route away from the fire that offers shelter
  • Driving away from the area is acceptable
  • Move far enough away from the flames until you feel comfortable
  • Discourage others from entering the area
  • From this safe location, call 911 or contact the local fire department or law enforcement and
  • Notify the operator of the pipeline

Any one of these is a sign of a suspected natural gas pipeline LEAK:

  • Whistling or hissing sound;
  • Distinctive, strong odor, often compared to rotten eggs;
  • Dense fog, mist or white cloud;
  • Bubbling in water, ponds or creeks;
  • Dust or dirt blowing up from the ground; or
  • Discolored or dead vegetation above the pipeline right of way.

Follow these steps:

  • Carefully evacuate the immediate area to where you can no longer hear, see or smell the gas
  • Avoid introducing any sources of ignition in the area
  • Do not start or turn off motor vehicles or electrical equipment (such as cell phones, pagers, two-way radios, or lights) as this could cause a spark
  • Abandon any equipment being used in or near the area
  • Avoid any open flames
  • Discourage others from entering the area
  • Call 911 or contact the local fire department or law enforcement from a safe location
  • Notify the operator of the pipeline

Two important things to remember:

  • Do not attempt to extinguish a natural gas fire
  • Do not attempt to operate any pipeline valves or equipment