Jake Dukett is a public awareness supervisor for Ameren Illinois. He has been a guest before. Jake is going to share some valuable safety tips around natural gas. He is also an assistant volunteer fire chief in Sherman, Illinois.
Q. What steps should you take if you smell natural gas in your home or business?
A. If you catch any scent of natural gas inside your home, leave the premises immediately and call Ameren Illinois at 800-755-5000.
Crews will respond at any hour of the day, seven days per-week. Additionally, there is zero customer charge for responding to a gas leak.
Average response time for reports of a natural gas leak is about 22 minutes.
Q. Is it true that natural gas is odorless and colorless?
A. Yes. Natural gas is odorless and colorless, but Ameren Illinois adds an odorant – mercaptan - to create the distinctive rotten egg smell. This makes it easier to identify and detect leaking gas.
Q. Is it true if the natural gas flame isn't a sharp blue color, there could be an issue with natural gas in your home?
A. Yes. The natural gas flame should be a sharp blue color. If it is orange, yellow or looks sloppy, that is a warning sign and is a sign of carbon monoxide.
Q. If you smell natural gas, why is it important not to open any windows before leaving your premises?
Q. What should you do if you see a leak outside of your premises?
Q. Let's say the customer or business owner has left their premises. What steps does Ameren take when responding to a natural leak?
Q. After checking the gas meter, what additional safety steps does Ameren take outside of the home?
Q. How much does it cost a customer for Ameren to come to your home or business, if you have called in a natural gas leak?
Q. Can you give us any tips to prevent a gas leak?
A. Have your natural gas furnace and other appliances inspected annually by a qualified contractor. This way you can be certain everything is operating both safely and in an energy efficient manner.
If purchasing new natural gas appliances, ensure they are high quality and ENERGY STAR certified.
Never use a gas oven or range top as a space heater.
Avoid storing flammable products such as paint stripper, fabric softener or salt bags in close proximity of your natural gas water heater or furnace.
Always call 8-1-1 (J.U.L.I.E) before conducting any projects that require digging. This will help prevent underground facility damage and potentially dangerous situations.
Customers should add Ameren Illinois to their cell phone contact list, 800-755-5000.