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Gas & Water

E M E R G E N C Y  C A L L  9 - 1 - 1

217-267-7911

Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8:00am-5:00pm

NATURAL GAS SAFETY

Carbon monoxide can be a by-product of an inefficient or improperly working gas fired appliance.  Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas that kills more than 200 people in the U.S. every year.  Make sure your equipment is in good working order and properly vented.  Check flues and chimneys to be sure they are clean and clear of debris.

Natural gas is dependable and safe when used properly.  If you suspect a carbon monoxide problem in your home, call the Village of Westville Gas Dept. at 267-7911 Mon-Fri 8am-5pm. 

After hours, holidays, weekends, if you have a gas emergency, please call 9-1-1 immediately.  

Warning Note: Gas appliance PVC vent pipes should not be blocked.  

Hot water heaters should NEVER be set higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit or scalding may occur!

RECOGNIZE A LEAK

Natural gas lines carry gaseous materials.  Natural gas is lighter than air and will rise.  Other heavier-than-air gases will stay near the ground and collect in low spots.  Leaking natural gas is potentially dangerous.  Although it is non-toxic, it can displace the oxygen you breathe, causing suffocation.

You can recognize a leak:

  • By Sight: a dense white cloud over a pipeline, discolored vegetation surrounding the gas line, or blowing dirt or dust may be signs of a leak. 

  By Sound: an unusual noise coming from the natural gas line, like a hissing or roaring sound, may be a sign of a leak.

  • By Smell: a natural gas leak is indicated by the strong odor of the chemical ethyl mercaptan, which is added to natural gas.

What to do if I recognize a leak…

  Leave the leak area immediately

  If the leak is at your home, leave the door open as you leave.

  • Go to a safe location and call the fire department (9-1-1) or Westville Gas Dept. (267-7911), giving your name and location of the leak.

What NOT to do if I recognize a leak…

  DO NOT light a match, turn on or off light switches, turn on a flashlight or anything that may create a spark

  DO NOT use the telephone, television or radio

  DO NOT use an automatic garage door

  DO NOT turn on the gas range or other gas appliance

 

METER SAFETY

Each natural gas service is equipped with a meter(s) which serves the customer.  If a gas line is accidentally broken and a leak is obvious – shut off any equipment or open flames in the area which might ignite the gas – evacuate the area and report the leak immediately to the Village of Westville Gas Department at 267-7911.  In an emergency, the gas to any house can be shut off at the meter.

Gas meters should be kept free from obstructions, such as trees and shrubs, to provide access to the meter for maintenance as well as in the event of an emergency.  Please keep snow and ice cleared away from around gas meter sets.

CALL BEFORE YOU DIG

The most likely type of an emergency on a pipeline is a leak caused by excavation and construction equipment by parties other than the gas company.

Do not assume the location or depth of a gas line.  Also, the gas line is not necessarily laid in a straight line.

Before you dig or excavate, you must contact the J.U.L.I.E. – “One-Call” system at  8-1-1.  You are required by state law to notify J.U.L.I.E. not less than 2 working days before digging, excavation or demolition activity begins whether landscaping, building fences or a major construction project.  The member utility companies will send a representative to mark their underground lines at your site.  The call is free and so is the service.

Calling before you dig, either by hand or with machinery, could prevent possible accidents, injuries or death.  Call 8-1-1

 

Can I build or dig on a right-of-way?

Natural gas pipeline rights-of-way must be kept free from structures and other obstructions to provide access to the gas line for maintenance, as well as in the event of an emergency.  Do not dig or build near the gas line without first contacting the Village of Westville Gas Department.

What to do if you dig & disturb or damage a natural gas line:

Even if you cause what appears to be only minor damage to the gas line, notify the Village of Westville Gas Department (267-7911) immediately.  A gouge, scrape, dent, or crease to the pipe or coating may cause a future rupture or leak.  It is important that the Village of Westville inspects and repairs any damage to the line.  Regardless of how minor the damage appears – don’t cover it up!

Do not attempt to make repairs to the line yourself.

     

After Hours EMERGENCIES CALL 9-1-1

 

IMPORTANT NOTICE TO OUR CUSTOMERS

Federal Regulation #192.16 requires that we notify you to exercise diligence regarding underground or buried gas piping.  Buried pipe may be subject to leakage and/or corrosion (corrosion may occur on metallic pipe) and could potentially be subject to hazards if not maintained.

Remember that any and all gas pipe downstream (house side) of the gas meter belongs to you, the gas consumer, and the consumer is responsible for maintenance and operation of this portion of the fuel line system.  We do not own the gas line beyond the meter; therefore, we do not routinely maintain or locate fuel lines.  Commercial plumbers and/or heating contractors may be contacted if and when gas fuel lines need attention.

Buried gas piping should be

  • Periodically inspected for leaks

  • Periodically inspected for corrosion if the piping is metallic

  • Repaired if any unsafe condition is discovered; or the flow of gas should be shut off

When excavation is performed or is about to be performed near the buried gas piping, the piping should be located and marked in advance, and any excavating performed near the pipe should be done by hand.

Flexible gas connectors are used to bring gas from supply pipes to appliances such as stoves, dryers, and room heaters.  They are made of corrugated metal tubing – newer models being fabricated from stainless steel or from brass that has been coated with plastic.  Most older connectors, however, were made from uncoated brass.

Some of the uncoated brass connectors have a serious flaw in the way they were made.  Solder was used to braze, or join, the flexible brass tubing to the new pieces.  Over time, the brazing can fail, causing a serious gas leak.  This could lead to an explosion or fire.

To our knowledge, brazed, uncoated brass connectors have not been made since 1976, but we still find many of them in use.  The older these connectors get, the greater the possibility of failure.

It is very difficult to see whether a flexible connector has been brazed, so don’t take a chance.  If you have an uncoated brass connector in your home, it should be replaced with either a new stainless-steel or a new plastic-coated brass connector.

 

In fact, it’s a good practice to replace any flexible gas connector which is more than 10 years old.  This is because flexible connectors are not meant to last a lifetime.  Older units can wear out from too much moving, bending, or from corrosion.  If you can, check your flexible connector without moving the appliance attached to it.  If you cannot make this check without moving the appliance, we recommend that you have a service contractor inspect the connector for you.  Moving the appliance could strain the connector, possibly causing a gas leak.  So, if your appliance must be moved, its best to have a professional on hand to do it.

If a replacement is needed, make sure the new connector is certified by the American Gas Association (AGA) and conforms to the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard Z21.24.

Remember, if you think you have a gas leak in your home – from a flexible connector or from any other source – call us immediately at 267-7911.  After hours, holidays, weekends, if you have a gas emergency, please call   9-1-1 immediately. 

If the odor of gas is strong, leave immediately and make the call from a neighbor’s phone.  Take care not to operate appliances or turn light switches on or off.

 

AMERICA’S PIPELINE NETWORK

There are over 300,000 miles of natural gas pipelines in the United States.  Pipelines are the safest method of transportation.  Natural gas provides about 24 per cent of all the energy used in the United States.

Pipelines are made of steel, covered with protective coating and buried underground.  They are tested and maintained through the use of diagnostic tools and cathodic protection.  Village of Westville Gas Department personnel will work with local police and fire departments in the event of an emergency.

Our hope is to continue to be a good neighbor and provide you with information to help you avoid potentially dangerous activity near the gas lines in your area.

Further Information:

If you have any questions or would like more information, please call the Village of Westville Gas Department at 267-7911 Mon-Fri 8:00am-5:00pm.