Checking for gas leaks is an important part of managing a manufacturing or engineering facility. Methane gas poses a serious health risk to your employees. It’s extremely flammable and can lead to an explosion unless you take care of the situation immediately. As a facility manager, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about responding to a gas leak. If you smell gas, see a broken pipe, or hear a hissing sound in your facility, you’ll need to take action right away. Learn more about the immediate steps to take after a detecting a gas leak.

Shut Off All Burners and Stoves

Gas is extremely flammable, so it’s important that you turn off all burners and stoves as fast as possible. Anything that produces a flame, including candles, blow torches, and matches should be put away or extinguished as soon as the gas leak has been detected.

Leave Electrical Devices and Mechanical Equipment as They Are

Don’t touch the lights, electrical devices, and other electric components around your facility. This also includes mechanical equipment like tractors, lifts, and motor vehicles. Turning on the engine or switching the power on or off can release combustible particles in the air, which can start a fire or explode with a gas leak nearby.

Shut Off the Gas Line (If Possible)

You may want to shut off the main gas line for your property during a gas leak, but only if the main valve to shut off the line is within reach. You don’t want to send one of your employees to shut off the gas line if it means putting them in danger. If you can reach the gas line quickly, turn it off on your way out of the building. If not, leave it be and make your way towards the exit.

Evacuate

You’ll need to alert your employees and all individuals on the premises that a gas leak has been detected and that they need to make their way to the exit as fast as possible. Don’t have your employees stand around next to the building. It’s important to get them far enough away from the building in case it explodes before the authorities arrive. Have them walk 20 or 30 yards away until there’s enough distance between them and the leak. You should practice evacuating the building before an actual emergency to make sure everyone can leave the building safely.

Contact the Authorities

Finally, it’s time to call the local authorities. This includes 9-1-1. Tell them you have a gas leak and you’ve successfully evacuated the building. Help will be on the way. You should then call your local utility company that you have a gas leak. They will send a team to resolve the situation.

Dealing with a gas leak is an inherently stressful situation. But the best thing you can do is educate your staff on how to deal with and respond to a leak quickly. Be vigilant when looking for leaks and visit Chemtech International for all your gas leak detection equipment.