In an earthquake, the shaking of a home or apartment can cause damage to gas piping and appliances. This damage can result in releases of natural gas that can lead to fires or even explosions. Structural weaknesses, the absence of appliance anchors, seismic activity, and a lack of flexible pipe connections can all contribute to a greater possibility of natural gas leaks. This problem is so prevalent that natural gas contributes to one of every four fires after an earthquake.
A primary concern when dealing with natural gas leaks and ensuing fires is the protection of property, rather than personal safety, because most homes have several potential exits for escape from a fire.
Reduce the Possibility of Gas Leaks
An effective way of REDUCING many natural gas leaks in the first place is to make sure that your water heater and any other appliances using natural gas are properly anchored and have flexible pipe connections.
The Simple Solution
At a minimum, know how to turn off the natural gas supply to your home. Make sure that you have an appropriate wrench easily accessible. You may also want to join a neighborhood preparedness group or make arrangements with your neighbors so that they can turn off your gas if you are not home and if they smell gas.
An Answer – Emergency Earthquake Gas Shut-off Valve
An Emergency Earthquake Gas Shut-Off Valve is your best "insurance" to stay safe during an earthquake. This device is installed between your gas meter and the house. In the event of a major earthquake, the unit will cut off the gas supply to the house, preventing gas leak damages, which is the number-one cause for earthquake-related property damage.
A permit is required for the installation of an Emergency Earthquake Gas Shut-Off Valve and the cost of these permits will vary from city to city.
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Mike Counsil Plumbing , San Jose
1915 O'Toole Way
San Jose, CA 95131
Tel: (408) 389-3181
Fax: (408) 433-5758
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