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Respond Safely to a Gas Leak or Power Outage

posted Oct 27, 2008, 6:33 PM by Santa Clara County Emergency Information
  • During an earthquake:
    • If you are indoors, stay inside. Get under a sturdy desk or table.
    • If you are cooking in the kitchen, turn off the stove and other appliances if it is possible to do so safely before you take cover.
    • If you are outdoors, get into the open away from buildings, trees, walls and power lines. Be alert for falling debris!
    • If you are driving, pull to the side of the road and stop. Do not park under overpasses, power lines, light posts, trees or signs. Stay in your car until the earthquake is over.
  • After an earthquake:
    • Check for injuries and ensure that everyone is safe.
    • Check for damage. If you smell or hear escaping gas, open windows and doors and get everyone outside. Find a phone away from the building to call 911, PG&E and the fire department immediately. If you are able to do so safely, shut off the gas valve at the meter. Do not shut off the valve unless you smell or hear gas escaping.
    • Once you shut off the gas, DO NOT turn it back on. Contact PG&E or another qualified professional to restore gas service to your home and check for gas leaks.
    • If you suspect a gas leak, do not use electrical switches, appliances or telephones, because sparks can ignite gas from broken lines. Do not check for a gas leak with a match or an open flame.
    • If the power goes out, unplug major appliances to prevent possible damage when the power is turned back on.