11 Things You Should and Shouldn’t Do In The Event of a Gas Leak

Boilers, kitchen cooktops, barbecues, and almost all central heating systems run on gas. While it’s serviced and maintained by professionals, sometimes leaks can happen. And when it does, better be ready to avoid bigger and severe consequences.

You might have heard all the horror stories of fires and explosions due to gas leaks. Just last year, seven people were rushed to the hospital after a gas leak in their Sydney home. The NSW Fire and Rescue team traced the leak back to the family’s pool heating system – which runs on natural gas. The team also identified high levels of carbon monoxide in the family’s home.

Carbon monoxide – the gas used in most of your appliances – can be dangerous to people and animals. It can damage your brain and internal organs. At extremely high levels, it may even lead to death. So if you smell gas at home, you should act quickly. 

How Does Gas Smell Like?

Natural gas, in itself, is colourless and odourless. Now, to avoid gas leaks being undetected, manufacturers and producers add a strong and stinky compound that allows you to smell if gas is leaking immediately. This compound is called mercaptan which gives gas its rotten egg-like smell. Others also describe gas to have a smelly sock odour. If you notice these in your home, here the things you should do. 

6 Things to Do When You Smell Gas at Home

  1. Turn off all your appliances as well as your oven and pilot lights. 
  2. If it’s safe to do so and if you have an external gas meter, the first thing you should do is shut off the gas supply. If you have an electricity meter, turn that off as well. 
  3. Open all the windows and doors to allow fresh air to come in. 
  4. Get everyone out. 
  5. Call your preferred licensed gas fitting Sydney company from outside of your home. They will locate what’s causing the problem and repair it quickly. They will also be the one to turn on your appliances. 
  6. For serious gas accidents, call the Electrical and Gas Safety Unit of Fair Trading at 13 32 20. A serious gas accident means a person has either died, suffers a permanent disability, hospitalized, requires medical treatment, or is unable to attend work for some time.

5 Things Not To Do When You Smell Gas

  1. Never turn on any switches and appliances, including your light switch. Don’t plug or unplug electrical appliances. All these can create a spark and cause a fire.
  2. Don’t light cigarettes, smoke, and or light matches in or around your property. 
  3. Don’t use the telephone or flashlight as these may also start a gas fire. 
  4. Do not re-enter your home until advised that it’s safe by an expert. 
  5. Don’t look for the gas leak while holding a naked flame or other sources of ignition. 

What are the Possible Risks and Injuries from a Gas Leak?

While natural gas is not poisonous or toxic on its own, it can still lead to some serious risks and injuries. See, when gas leaks, it displaces the air around you. This then can cause the following:

  • Fire and explosion
  • Headaches and dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Asphyxiation
  • Unconsciousness
  • Permanent injury
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Death

To minimize the risks and injuries from gas leaks, all your gas installations and work should be handled by a licensed and certified individual or company. Make sure to hire people who are experienced, reliable, and have the certifications to prove it. Also, work with people who can guarantee and stand behind their work.

If you are looking for gas fitting company in Sydney that can help you with all your natural gas needs, choose Inspired Plumbing. You can trust us to install, maintain, and repair your gas appliances anytime. Plus, we offer lifetime guarantees on our work too. Contact us to learn more. 

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