NYSEG wants to remind customers to rely on their senses when detecting a natural gas leak. It’s important for customers to know the warning signs to protect themselves, their families, homes and businesses. If undetected, gas leaks can put people’s lives in danger, cause significant and costly damage, and can interrupt essential utility service.

A natural gas leak is usually recognized by smell, sight, or sound. 

Smell: If customers smell natural gas they should immediately, get up, get out and call for help from a neighbor’s phone. Natural gas is colorless and odorless. For safety, a distinctive sulfur-like odor, similar to rotten eggs, is added so that customers can recognize it quickly.

Sight:  A white cloud, mist, fog, bubbles in standing water or blowing dust is also a warning sign of a gas leak.  Customers may also see vegetation that appears to be dead or dying for no apparent reason.

Sound: A gas leak is usually detected by hearing an unusual noise like roaring, hissing, or whistling.

NYSEG offers these few examples on what customers should do if  they suspect a natural gas leak:

  • Get up, get out, and get away! Then immediately call NYSEG at 800.572.1121 from a safe location
  • Do not smoke or operate electrical switches or appliances. These items may produce a spark that might ignite the natural gas and cause an explosion
  • Do not assume someone else will report the condition
  • Provide the exact location, including cross streets
  • Let us know if sewer construction or digging activities are going on in the area