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Gas Outages and Leaks

Gas Outages and Leaks

What to do in case of a gas outage or leak

Natural gas is reliable and safe when used properly. But just as with electricity outages, there are dangers to be aware of and prepare for in order to keep your family and your home safe.

How to recognize a natural gas leak

If you suspect a leak, immediately call 1-800-895-2999 or 911 in an emergency.

Use your senses to recognize a potentially dangerous natural gas leak:

  1. Smell: Natural gas is odorless except for the harmless odorant we add to help you detect a leak. The added odorant, called mercaptan, has a sulfur-like smell, similar to a rotten egg.
  2. Hear: A leak may produce a noise that ranges from next to nothing to a slight hiss to a loud roar, depending on the leak’s size and pressure.
  3. See: A leak may cause dust, dirt or debris to fly, or create blowing or continuous bubbling movement in water. It also can cause a spot of dead or discolored vegetation in an otherwise green area.

How to respond to a natural gas leak

When an odor is persistent or seems to be everywhere, it could be a sign of a gas leak inside your home or with an outside line. Upon detecting such an odor, immediately get everyone out of your home or building, move a safe distance away and then call for help. Because an electric spark can ignite an explosion, remember to follow these tips:

  1. Do not turn on or turn off electrical switches.
  2. Avoid using electric appliances such as garage door openers or telephones of any type.
  3. Do not start up or shut down motor vehicles or any other electrical equipment.
  4. Do not strike a match. Avoid open flames or other ignition sources.
  5. Move to a location a safe distance away from your home when the odor is outdoors.
  6. Call Xcel Energy at 800-895-2999 or 911 in an emergency.
  7. Stay away until Xcel Energy or the emergency responders have told you it’s safe to return.
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Why do our products and services differ based on state? Because our business is regulated by state. We have regulated operations in eight Western and Midwestern states. The different regulatory body for each state we serve determines what products and services we deliver in that state.