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Southern company employee checking fireplace
Southern company employee checking fireplace

Emergency Information

Smell Gas?

LOOK for blowing dirt, discolored vegetation or continued bubbling in standing water.

LISTEN for a hissing or roaring noise near a natural gas appliance or line.

SMELL for the distinctive, rotten-egg odor associated with natural gas. Natural gas is colorless and odorless, so we add a chemical odorant called mercaptan for easy detection. This odorant has a distinctive “rotten egg” type odor. You should act any time you detect even a small amount of this odor in the air.

Note: Always leave if you suspect a leak. Be aware that some persons may not be able to detect the odorant because they have a diminished sense of smell, known as olfactory fatigue, or because the odor is being masked by other odors in the area. Certain conditions may cause the odorant to diminish so that it is not detectable. 

 

LEAVE the area immediately and move a safe distance away from the potential leak, while avoiding any action that may cause sparks. Do not try to identify the source or to stop the leak yourself.

AVOID
 using any sources of ignition, such as cell phones, cigarettes, matches, flashlights, electronic devices, motorized vehicles, light switches or landlines, as natural gas can ignite from a spark, possibly causing a fire or explosion. Natural gas is non-toxic, lighter than air and displaces oxygen. In severe cases, if not used properly, natural gas can also lead to asphyxiation. 

CALL
 Atlanta Gas Light at 877.427.4321 or 911 once you are out of the area of the suspected leak and in a safe place. Stay away until Atlanta Gas Light or emergency personnel indicate it is safe to return.

Note: Do not solely rely on sense of smell. Be aware that some individuals may not be able to detect the odorant because they have a diminished sense of smell, olfactory fatigue or because the odor is being masked by other odors in the area. Certain conditions may cause the odorant to diminish so that it is not detectable. Some gas lines, due to their unique function, may not have odor at all.

Carbon Monoxide (CO): Signs & Leak Prevention

CO: Signs & Leak Prevention

CO: Signs & Leak Prevention

Signs of Carbon Monoxide Buildup

Stuffy or stale air
Very high humidity
Fallen soot from your chimney or draft hood
A hot draft coming from your draft hood

If carbon monoxide has been backing up into your living space for some time,
you may experience carbon monoxide poisoning. While carbon monoxide
poisoning is extremely rare, be aware of the following symptoms:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness and weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stinging eyes
  • Sleepiness
  • Heart flutters

Proper Ventilation

Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless gas that can cause illness and even death when not properly vented by your furnace or appliances. Carbon monoxide comes from the incomplete combustion of common fuels such as heating oil, gasoline, coal, wood, charcoal, kerosene, propane and natural gas. When properly operated and
maintained, natural gas heating equipment and appliances are safe and efficient.


But if your appliances or heating equipment are not properly operated and vented, carbon monoxide could back up into your living space.

Improper venting can be caused by the following:

  • Chimneys or vents blocked by leaves, bird nests, debris or heating residue 
  • Malfunctioning or wrongly installed equipment 
  • Heating equipment improperly enclosed by paneling or other structures 
  • Improperly vented equipment

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

There are many carbon monoxide detectors on the market. Regardless of brand, the detector you purchase should meet current UL standards and must be installed and operated according to the manufacturer’s instructions.


Illinois requires carbon monoxide alarms.
Homeowners and landlords throughout Illinois are required by law to install carbon monoxide (CO) detectors.

Public Act 094-0741 requires every dwelling be equipped with at least one approved carbon monoxide alarm, in operating condition, within 15 feet of every sleeping room. This alarm may be battery operated, plug-in with battery back-up or wired into the home's AC power with a secondary battery back-up. Approved alarms bear the label of a nationally recognized testing laboratory and comply with the most recent standards of the Underwriters Laboratories or the Canadian Standard Association.

Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips

  1. Install a carbon monoxide detector.
  2. Have an HVAC technician check your heating equipment annually.
  3. Keep the area surrounding your gas appliances clear from clutter or trash.