Report natural gas smells & obey carbon monoxide alarms

November 20, 2017

Report natural gas smells & obey carbon monoxide alarms

Did you know that an odourant is added to natural gas so that you can smell it in case of a gas leak?  This compound – mercaptan – has a strong ‘rotten egg’ smell that helps keep you safe.

Using natural gas is safe. Modern gas appliances are certified to high standards, they have built-in safety features, and the contractors who install them are specially trained and licensed. Still, we want people to know how to react if they suspect a gas leak or hear their carbon monoxide alarms go off.  

Request a scratch-and-sniff sticker so you know the rotten egg smell associated with natural gas: e-mail If you don’t have a sense of smell, install a natural gas alarm in your home, in accordance with manufacturer directions.

As winter approaches, and more gas-fueled appliances are in use, Utilities Kingston urges its customers to heed the following gas safety tips:

  • Report gas smells or “hissing”:  If you are inside and smell gas or hear hissing, leave immediately. Do not do anything that could create a spark – don’t switch a light on or off, and don’t use cell phones or lighters, for example. If you are outside, clear the area and do not use lighters or start vehicles. Call 911 when you are safe.
  • Install and obey carbon monoxide (CO) alarms:  CO is an invisible, odourless gas that can kill you in high concentrations. If your CO detector goes off, immediately evacuate all occupants (pets, too!) and call 911. Ontario’s Fire Code requires detectors near all sleeping areas in homes with a fuel burning appliance, fireplace or an attached garage.

Utilities Kingston has been providing safe and reliable gas services since 1847 when it was known as Kingston Gas Light Company.  

Get more tips from our page Stay Safe this Winter.