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Smell Natural Gas? GET OUT!

Oct 12, 2022

If you smell rotten eggs or hear hissing from the gas line in your home or office, you could have a natural gas leak. Natural gas is flammable, and can be ignited by heat, sparks, or flames.

The smell of natural gas is an indication your equipment may not be operating properly and needs repair. Natural gas is a clean-burning, efficient fuel that is odorless, colorless, tasteless, and lighter than air. City Utilities adds a foul-smelling odorant called mercaptan to natural gas before sending it into the pipelines. Odorant can assist in leak detection.

ACT FAST and follow these tips to stay safe if you smell natural gas.


  • LIGHT any matches, lighters, cigarettes, or e-cigs.
  • TURN ON OR OFF any electrical switches, appliances, or lights.
  • USE your cell phone until you are a safe distance away from the area.


  • STOP what you’re doing.
  • GO outside immediately and move to a safe spot approximately three light poles or 300 feet away.
  • CALL 911 and stay outside until emergency responders say it is safe to return.

Always ACT FAST if you detect a natural gas leak. City Utilities will quickly check suspected leaks at no cost. Leaks can be reported anonymously. Call City Utilities’ 24-hour emergency hotline at (417) 863-9000 to check a suspected leak.