Natural Gas Leaks

Leak Recognition and Response

1. Potential hazards of products transported

  • Pipelines carry gaseous materials under high pressure

  • Natural gas is colorless and lighter than air

  • Natural gas is flammable

  • Any pipeline leak can be potentially hazardous

2. How to recognize a pipeline leak. Sight – Smell – Sound

  • Sight – Look for dirt being blown into the air, mist, fog, bubbling in standing water, fire coming from the ground or dead or dying vegetation.

  • Sound – Listen for any unusual noise like a roaring, blowing, hissing or whistling.

  • Smell – Notice any unusual odor. Natural gas is odorless. Decatur Utilities adds an odorant to natural gas to give it a noticeable odor.

3. Response to a pipeline leak


  • Turn off and abandon any motorized equipment you may be operating.

  • If in a building exit the building immediately. If outside a building, evacuate everyone from the building. · Move to a safe environment immediately.

  • Call Utility provider immediately. In the event of fire or explosion, call 911. Do Not assume someone else will report the condition.

  • Provide exact location, including any cross streets.

  • Avoid flames and operating electrical appliances and/or equipment. Do not smoke or light matches.

  • Do not use telephones (even cellular), flashlights or other items that can produce a spark.

  • Warn others to stay away.

  • Do not attempt to correct problem.

Call Alabama One Call at 1-800-292-8525 or dial 811 before digging. See or for more details.


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Trent Simon