As millions of Californians take part in earthquake drills today as part of the 12th annual Great California ShakeOut, we urge our customers to also take a moment to review the safety tips below so they know what to do and what not to do with their natural gas meter before and after an earthquake.
Natural Gas Safety Tips
- Know where your gas meter is located and keep a 12" or larger adjustable wrench with your emergency supplies, near your building exit or next to your gas meter shut-off valve. Do not store the wrench on the gas meter or other gas piping.
- Be prepared to turn off your natural gas meter but ONLY in the event you smell natural gas, hear the sound of natural gas escaping or see other signs of a leak – and ONLY if it is safe to do so. (Depending on how many customers are without natural gas service, it may take an extended period of time for SDG&E to turn your natural gas services back on.)
- If you turn off gas to the meter, leave it OFF. Do not turn it back on yourself. Interior gas piping and appliances must be inspected for possible damage before service can be safely restored.
- Call SDG&E to turn the gas back on, relight the pilots and service your appliances. (Note that certain repairs may have to be performed by your plumber or heating contractor. However, only SDG&E field employees are allowed to turn on the gas to the meter.)
- DO NOT ignite a flame or use any electrical appliances, light switches or other devices that can cause a spark until you are sure there are no gas leaks.
- Check safety devices, such as smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, to ensure that they are functioning properly.