National Grid: Winter Storm Precautions, Safety Tips

With a Winter Storm well under way here on LI, National Grid urges customers to take extra caution.

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Long Island, NY - January 21st, 2014 - The winter storm hitting our area is expected to bring heavy snow across New York City and Long Island tonight into Wednesday. National Grid field crews and support personnel are prepared in the event the weather causes damage to our region's natural gas network.
While storm preparations are important, so too is the safety of our customers and employees. We would like to advise customers to be prepared as high winds, heavy snow and ice can pose a serious safety risk. With driving conditions expected to be potentially treacherous, we also urge particular caution when driving around crew work locations, especially where visibility might be limited by blowing snow.
To ensure your safety, please make note of the following tips:
  • The build up of ice and snow around or over gas meters and vents for natural gas appliances could pose a serious safety risk. Ice and snow falling from a roof can damage gas meters or service connections to customers' homes or businesses, resulting in a gas leak.Ice and snow blocking vents could cause carbon monoxide (CO) to back up into a building and result in carbon monoxide poisoning for those inside.
  • To avoid these dangers, National Grid advises natural gas customers to closely inspect areas around and over gas meters, service hook-ups and vents for ice and snow that could damage equipment or prevent CO from properly venting.

National Grid advises that you take immediate action anytime you suspect a natural gas leak:

  • Get Out — All occupants should leave the house immediately. Do not use the telephone or light switches for any reason.
  • Call Us — After leaving the house and reaching a safe environment, call the National Grid 24-hour gas emergency number: 1-800-490-0045
  • Stay Out — Do not return to your home until National Grid tells you it is safe.
Carbon Monoxide
  • The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to those of the flu. Depending upon the amount of carbon monoxide in the air and length of exposure, symptoms may include headaches, weakness, confusion, chest tightness, skin redness, dizziness, nausea, sleepiness, fluttering of the heart or loss of muscle control.
  • If you suspect carbon monoxide is present in your home, go outside immediately and breathe deeply; then call 911. If symptoms are severe, get medical attention right away.