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Clearwater Gas System Urges Customers and Non Customers to Plan Ahead for Hurricane Irma

Post Date:09/06/2017 4:32 PM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sept. 6, 2017

 

Contact:
Lisa Friday
(727) 562-4980, ext. 7456

Clearwater Gas System Urges Customers and Non-Customers to Plan Ahead for Hurricane Irma

CLEARWATER, Fla. – Clearwater Gas System knows the importance of everyone being aware and knowing what to do in case of a gas emergency and especially during severe weather. So to help you prepare, Clearwater Gas System reminds customers and non-customers of the following storm/gas safety tips:

Detecting Gas Leaks

  • If you smell a rotten egg odor that is often associated with natural or propane gas, you should immediately leave the affected area; call 911; and then call the Clearwater Gas System 24-hour emergency response line at (727) 462-6633 from a safe location.
  • Residents should never try to identify the source of a leak. Please call to notify us, if you smell gas.
  • If the odor of gas is present, do not use a telephone or cellular phone, turn light switches on or off, or operate any appliance, garage door opener or do anything that might cause a spark, such as lighting a match.

Damage Prevention

  • Strong winds and saturated grounds could cause trees to become uprooted. Before removing downed trees, customers should dial the Florida 811 line by calling 811 or (800) 432-4770 to have the location of underground utility lines marked (downed trees could become tangled with the natural or propane gas lines).
  • If a Clearwater Gas System natural gas meter or propane tank is damaged or gas line is exposed and leaking, immediately leave the area; call 911; and then call the Clearwater Gas System 24-hour emergency response line at (727) 462-6633 from a safe location.

Gas Meter & Propane Tank Safety

  • Customers are encouraged to know how to locate their natural gas meter and propane tank.
  • Following a severe weather emergency, make sure the gas meter and propane tank remain visible, and the area surrounding the meter and propane tank is free of trash and debris. Mechanical construction equipment used after the storm for clean up may cause damage if the meter and propane tank are hidden from plain view.
  • If a natural gas, propane meter or propane tank is damaged or a gas line is exposed and leaking, immediately leave the area; call 911; and then call the Clearwater Gas System 24-hour emergency response number at (727) 462-6633.

Appliance Safety

  • If flooding occurs at a residence or business and the gas appliances are under water, customers are advised not to operate their gas appliances until a safety inspection has been conducted by licensed professionals.
  • Customers are advised to leave their natural gas service on during a hurricane or severe storm. Most gas appliances have safety valves that shut off the flow of gas automatically if the pilot light goes out.

Evacuation

Clearwater Gas System recommends that you properly secure your gas appliances prior to evacuating your home. Here are a few safe and easy steps that we suggest you follow to assure that you return to find your gas appliances in the best possible condition:

  • DO NOT shut off your natural or propane gas supply at the meter. If you must evacuate your home or business, leave your natural gas supply on. Only authorized utility or emergency personnel should turn your meter valve on or off.
  • If you so choose, you CAN turn off the natural or propane gas to your individual appliances at the valve located behind or within 6 feet of the gas appliance.
  • In the event of possible flooding, customers with propane tanks can turn off the propane supply at the tank by locating the valve (usually located on top of the tank) and turning to the ‘off’ position, utilizing a clockwise motion until the valve can’t be turned any further.
  • Remember, it is not safe to store any size propane gas container inside your home or garage.

After the Storm

  • Do not operate any natural gas or propane gas appliances that you suspect have been flooded or damaged.
  • Call the Clearwater Gas System’s Service Department at (727) 562-4900, ext. 7419, to have our gas technicians relight your pilot lights, inspect your gas appliances to ensure they are in proper working condition, and turn your gas back on, if needed. Note:  All Clearwater Gas System personnel carry ID which can be presented upon request.

As your community energy provider, Clearwater Gas System is committed to maintaining the highest safety standard possible. Please take all severe weather warnings seriously and plan ahead to be safe! Remember, safety first. Visit our website at clearwatergas.com or pinellascounty.org/emergency, for additional weather- related safety tips and updates.

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