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Snowfall warning: prepare with utility information

Snowfall warning: prepare with utility information

Environment Canada has issued a snow fall warning for our area, with total snowfall accumulations of 15 to 20 cm, beginning early this afternoon and ending Thursday morning. 

Rapidly accumulating snow can build up on fire hydrants, exhaust vents, and natural gas and electricity meters, presenting a safety risk to you and your family. Utilities Kingston offers information so you know what preventative steps to take to ensure your safety.

If you have any concerns about utility equipment, contact the Utilities Kingston 24-hour line at 613-546-1181. Never use social media to report a utility issue or emergency.

To protect worker and public safety, please slow down and follow all signs when our crews are at work.

Stay updated

We strive to provide reliable and timely information about utility interruptions. Stay up-to-date with our outages map, and by following us on Facebook and Twitter

Keep gas and electrical meters clear

Utilities Kingston reminds you that, although your outdoor gas meter is designed to withstand winter weather, heavy or hard-packed snow and ice on your meter can be a safety hazard. Tips and reminders:

  • Accumulated snow places stress on your meter piping; damage to the piping can cause a gas leak.
  • Every meter has a pressure relief vent. It is important to keep this clear of snow and debris.
  • In case of emergency, emergency response crews need access to your meter.
  • Never let snow completely cover your meter.
  • Do not shovel snow up against your meter.
  • Take care in using a snow blower or plow near your meter.
  • Never kick or hit the gas meter or its piping to break away built-up snow or ice.
  • Use a broom to gently clear snow and ice from this equipment. If you have trouble gently removing ice, contact Utilities Kingston.

Keep outside exhaust vents cleared

To prevent dangerous carbon monoxide (CO) build-up in your home, keep the external vent pipes of furnaces, fireplaces, water heaters and clothes dryers clear of snow and ice. 

Make hydrants visible

Residents and snow removal companies are reminded not to shovel or blow snow onto hydrants. We thank citizens who take the time to clear snow and ice from fire hydrants, providing access to fire fighters in case of emergency.

Did you know? There are 3,600 hydrants in the municipal water distribution system. After a heavy snow fall, we inspect hydrants and then make them accessible for fire protection. Inspectors divide the area into 16 ‘hydrant beats’ of approximately 200 hydrants each. They visually inspect hydrants, and clear them of snow and ice as needed. We prioritize hydrants adjacent to critical services such as hospitals, schools and long-term care facilities.

Report gas smells or “hissing”

Smell the 'rotten egg' smell associated with a natural gas leak? Call Utilities Kingston immediately from outside your home or building at 613-546-1181,

How to detect and respond to a natural gas leak.

Install and obey carbon monoxide alarms

Ontario Fire Code requires all homes (whether single family, semi, or other) with fuel burning appliances (including fireplaces) and/or attached garages, to be equipped with CO alarms. These alarms should be located outside of all sleeping areas. For added protection, install a carbon monoxide alarm on every storey of the home according to manufacturer’s instructions.

If your CO alarm sounds, and you or other occupants suffer from symptoms of CO poisoning:

  • Ensure all people and pets leave the home
  • Call 911
  • Seek medical attention immediately
  • Once everyone is safe, call Utilities Kingston at 613-546-1181; or
  • Call a heating contractor registered with the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) for an inspection (there will be a charge for this inspection). Find a registered contractor by calling the TSSA at 1-877-682-TSSA (8772), or by visiting TSSAs Find a Contractor page.

Read more on CO safety.

More information

Know what to do in the event of a winter storm - with information on  power outagesand basement flooding

For more information on keeping your home and family safe, visit our page on Winter Safety

If you have any concerns about utility equipment, contact the Utilities Kingston 24-hour line at 613-546-1181. Never use social media to report a utility issue or emergency.