Smell Gas? Know What to do!

Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) is committed to the safety of its customers, the communities it serves and its employees. As part of our ongoing effort to enhance natural gas safety, we want to remind everyone about how to recognize and respond to a potential natural gas leak.

Look, Listen, Smell

Use your senses of sight, hearing and smell, along with any of the following signs, to alert yourself to the presence of a gas leak:


  • A damaged connection to a gas appliance
  • Dirt or water being blown in the air
  • Dead or dying vegetation (in an otherwise moist area) over or near pipeline areas
  • A fire or explosion near a pipeline
  • Exposed pipeline after an earthquake, fire, flood or other disaster


  • An unusual sound, such as a hissing, whistling or roaring sound near a gas line or appliance.


  • The distinctive odor of natural gas*

Responding to a Leak

  • Remain calm
  • Don't light a match, candle or cigarette
  • Don't turn electrical appliances or lights on or off or use any device that could cause a spark

If you smell gas immediately evacuate the area and when in a safe location, call SoCalGas at 800-427-2200 or 911. SoCalGas can be reached 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

*Please be aware that some people may not be able to smell the odor because they have a diminished sense of smell, olfactory fatigue (normal, temporary inability to distinguish an odor after prolonged exposure to it), or because the odor is being masked or hidden by other odors that are present, such as cooking, damp, musty or chemical odors. In addition, certain conditions in pipe and soil can cause odor fade - the loss of odorant so that it is not detectable by smell.