You open your front door and smell gas – what do you do?

In case of a gas emergency, there are several steps to follow:

Emergency procedures

  1. Firstly, ventilate – leave doors and windows open and get fresh air.
  2. Don’t switch any lights on or off and extinguish any naked flames.
  3. If the source of the gas is obvious, for example a gas hob left on unlit, then switch it off.
  4. Do not turn the gas supply on again until it has been checked by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
  5. Call National Grid Emergencies (formerly Transco Gas) – 0800 111 999 to get the gas supply to the property turned off.

If at all possible, that is to say quickly and without putting yourself at risk, shut down the gas supply at the meter where there is a shut off lever. The photos show it in the off and on position. When the lever is at right angles to the pipe work, then the gas is off.

Emergency shut off levers should be readily accessible and visible. Make sure you know where your meter is and you have a key to open the cabinet door. It’s worth having a look in advance so you know where it is.

What happens next?

When National Grid Emergencies engineer arrives, he or she¬†will shut down the gas supply to your property. Once the gas has been switched off, you will need to call a gas engineer to investigate and carry out any necessary repairs to faulty appliances or pipe work. This work is the property owners’ responsibility.

If the leak is in the pipe network leading to your property, National Grid Emergencies will investigate and repair and this is its responsibility.

The most important thing is that the source of the leak is found and fixed. A build up of gas can have catastrophic consequences. That is to say, property can be be destroyed and people seriously injured or killed.

For further advice, visit Gas Safe: What to do in a gas emergency

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