Natural gas company sends warning to customers

(AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

CHICOPEE, Mass (WWLP)–Columbia Gas company is urging people in Western Massachusetts to pay attention to their surroundings and not to ignore the smell of gas.

This warning comes just one week after the New York City gas explosion killed 8 people and injured dozens more.

Here are a few signs gas may be leaking from underground pipelines:

There may be bubbling water or dirt on the ground near the gas line.

You may hear a hissing or blowing sound from that area.

Or you may smell the gas.  Natural gas is odorless and colorless, but the gas company adds a chemical to make it smell like rotten eggs so it’s more easily detected.

If you think you smell gas the gas company says to leave your windows and doors as they are and leave the area immediately.   They also say it’s good idea to warn others in the area to do the same.

Be sure to avoid any kind of open flame, or anything that could spark ignition, including cell phones, door bells, garage doors, or other power equipment.

If you think you smell a gas leak be sure you call 911, and Columbia Gas at 1-800-525-8222.

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