Severe Weather Safety
Keep these safety tips in mind:
- DO NOT attempt to turn off your natural gas.
- If you smell natural gas, immediately leave the house and call our 24-hour emergency response line, at 888.Nicor4u (888.642.6748).
- NEVER try to identify the source of a natural gas leak yourself.
Before the Storm
- Customers are encouraged to know the location of their natural gas meter.
- Nicor Gas advises customers to leave their gas meter on to maintain proper pressure in the gas piping within their homes or businesses and to prevent water from entering the lines should flooding occur. Most gas appliances have safety valves that shut off the flow of gas automatically if the pilot light goes out.
- Your natural gas service should operate uninterrupted throughout the storm. Only Nicor Gas or emergency personnel should turn the valve off. In cases of severe lightning, customers might want to unplug natural gas appliances to avoid possible electrical damage.
- Customers are urged to report a natural gas emergency to the Nicor Gas 24-hour emergency response line at 888.Nicor4U (642.6748). The damage assessment and restoration process begins once the storm has passed, and it’s safe for our crews to proceed with gathering information and determining the extent of the service needs in the affected areas.
During/Immediately After the storm
- Natural gas is injected with a distinct odor, which many people equate to that of rotten eggs. If the odor of gas is present when you return to your home, immediately leave the affected area and call our 24-hour emergency response line, at 888.Nicor4U (642.6748) from a safe location. Residents should never try to identify the source of a leak themselves.
- If you smell gas, do not use a telephone or cellular phone, turn light switches on or off, operate any appliance or do anything that might cause a spark, such as a lighting a match or turning on a flashlight.
- If flooding occurs at a residence or business and the gas appliances are or have been submerged under water, do not try to operate the appliances.
- During clean up and repair after a storm avoid causing damage to the gas lines by calling 811 before digging. This also pertains to removing downed trees as they can become entangled with natural gas lines.
- Following a weather emergency, ensure the gas meter is visible, and the area surrounding the meter is free of trash and debris. Mechanical equipment used after the storm to clean up a location may damage an unseen meter. If a natural gas meter is damaged or gas line is exposed, immediately leave the area and call our 24-hour emergency response number at 888.Nicor4U (642.6748).
If your gas service was interrupted as a result of a severe storm, restoration time depends on when water recedes in flooded areas and customers’ homes and businesses are free of standing water, and when Nicor Gas personnel can safely enter homes and businesses, and appliances are easily accessible by technicians.
Flood Fact Sheet
No Power? No Problem!
When severe weather hits and you lose power for days or even weeks, natural gas appliances like water heaters and ranges still work. And for the best defense against power outages, we recommed a natural gas generator. Fueled continually by natural gas, most generators are fully automatic. Within seconds of an outage, the unit comes on, supplies power, and switches off when power returns.