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Gas Leaks

No tacky jokes here, folks, just common sense advice. To limit problems with gas leaks, it is important to know the location of your gas inlet and the shut-off valve. It is also important to keep a sturdy adjustable wrench in a nearby storage location in case you need to turn off the valve. Go over how to shut off the valve with appropriate members of the family.

If you smell gas somewhere in your home, always err on the side of caution.


  • Get everyone out of the house immediately.
  • Once everyone is safe, turn off the gas at the main shutoff valve (located on the exterior gas pipe next to the meter).
  • Use a wrench to turn the valve to the closed position (see picture).
  • Call the fire department or local utility as soon as possible.
  • If you have doubts or troubles turning off your main gas valve, have the utility or fire personnel do it for you.


  • Don't turn on switches, appliances or anything else, period.
  • Don't light a match! Seems obvious, but you'd be surprised.
  • Don't hang around breathing fumes. If the source isn't obvious, you could have a leak.

One thing in life you'll never regret is being ready for anything. A little preparedness in a time of crisis can mean the difference between safety and injury (or worse), so take the time to understand how to deal with household emergencies. Do it not only for yourself, but also for those who depend on you.