The Reno Fire Department cautions all residents within the Truckee Meadows who have propane service to keep snow off propane tanks, piping and regulators to avoid damage that could result in leaks.
Exposed gas lines, regulators and meters need to be cleared of any snow to avoid blocking vents and causing regulator malfunctions that can release gas vapor into a home or business.
In addition, snow accumulation can snap lines at the tank resulting in release of gas vapor into the surrounding snow that can then find its way into a home and result in an explosion and fire.
The Fire Department recommends keeping the area around propane tanks free of all snow accumulations allowing any possible gas vapor release to dissipate.
Natural gas users should also carefully clear snow away from the natural gas meter/regulator and surrounding area using a broom or by hand to prevent damage from shovels or other implements, and should never bang on the meter or piping to clear ice.
Clearing around the meter will provide access should a meter valve need to be shut off in an emergency.
The meter valve should only be turned off in an emergency by hand or with a pipe wrench or other appropriate tool, and should not be turned on again by residents after it has been shut.
Residents should contact Sierra Pacific Power Co. to have the valve turned on again.
Residents who smell a strong, persistent odor of gas should immediately leave the structure.
They should not use a telephone, flashlight, switch a light on or off, pull any plugs from outlets or light a match within the structure, should not start a vehicle in a garage or near a natural gas leak, or operate the garage door opener, which could ignite the gas and cause an explosion.
Use a neighbor's telephone, cell phone or phone away from the house to call 9-1-1 to report the emergency.