March 2012


What to do if you smell a gas leak...

LOOK for blowing dirt or continued bubbling in standing water.

LISTEN near a natural gas appliance or line; there may be a hissing or roaring sound when natural gas is leaking.

AVOID touching anything that may cause a spark. This includes lighters, matches, cigarettes, flashlights, light switches and telephones in the area of the suspected leak. You should even wait until you are away from the area to use a cell phone.

CALL Atlanta Gas Light or 9-1-1 once you are out of the area of the suspected leak and in a safe place. Stay away until an Atlanta Gas Light representative or emergency personnel indicates it is safe to return.

Other Important Safety Information:

Water Heater Safety

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) urges all users to lower their water heaters to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. A thermostat setting of 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius) may be necessary for residential water heaters to reduce or eliminate the risk of most tap water scald injuries. Consumers should consider lowering the thermostat to the lowest settings that will satisfy hot water needs for all clothing and dish washing machines. Never take hot water temperature for granted. Always hand-test before using, especially when bathing children and infants.

Natural Gas Equipment Safety

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency:
  • It's important that you have your furnace inspected by a qualified specialist, to ensure that it is in good working condition. Do not attempt repairs yourself unless you are qualified.
  • Be sure all furnace controls and emergency shutoffs are in proper working condition.
  • Keep trash and other combustible material away from your heating and water heating systems.

Avoiding Carbon Monoxide

Natural gas is a safe fuel source; however, incomplete combustion of any fuel - charcoal, gasoline, wood or even natural gas - produces carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is poisonous and has no odor, taste or color. Carbon monoxide detectors are helpful, but they are no substitute for using equipment safely. This includes having your appliances inspected at least once a year by a certified contractor. For a referral to one in your area, call 1-800-427-5463 and choose option five.

Read other articles from The Walton EMC Gasette:
Getting to Know Georgia's Public Service Commission
Stop the Roller Coaster - Sign Up for Levelized Billing
Gas Up the Stove with Zucchini Casserole