Is my home safe?
Liquefied petroleum (LP) gas is an important energy source for the rural Midwest. With it, we heat and cool our homes and power our farm operations. When it comes to LP gas, however, what you can’t see can be harmful, even volatile, if a tank or regulator begins to leak. Learn more about the properties of LP gas and know what to do if a leak occurs.
LP gas 101
LP gas, also referred to as LPG or propane, is invisible to the human eye and naturally odorless. Manufacturers add an identifying odor to the gas so a leak can be detected. Because LP gas vapor is heavier than air, it will seek the lowest level of the structure if a leak occurs within a building or near an exterior door or window opening. LP gas is also highly flammable. If an uncontrolled ignition source is present within that lowest level of the building, a fire and/or explosion is likely to occur.
What if there’s a gas leak at home?
If a homeowner suspects an LP gas leak, Grinnell Mutual recommends the following:
1. Evacuate all individuals from the home immediately. Do not turn on or off any light switches as this action could serve as a source of ignition if LP gas vapors are present.
2. Shut-off the LP Gas at the tank outside the home.
3. Call the fire department from a neighbor’s home or from a remote location using a cell phone.
4. Relay your concerns and the actions you have taken and follow the advice provided by the fire department staff.
Contact your local LP gas supplier for additional safety information.