Natural gas is one of the cleanest fuels, producing only carbon dioxide, water vapor, and nitrogen oxide when burnt. This is the reason why it is used in the home for cooking purposes. However, like any other gases, natural gases can be dangerous if not handled properly.
Gas leaks are one of the most common problems faced you will come across in houses. Natural gas is a combustible material. Hence, unnoticed gas leaks can potentially cause a fire. It also has adverse effects on health.
How Can Gas Leaks Be Dangerous For Homes?
According to the Australian regulators, there are 14 million natural gas users in Australia. Natural gas is safe material if installed and used in a controlled environment. However, gas leaks do occur, and they pose serious risks.
Carbon monoxide is dangerous for the health and can potentially poison living things. In addition to that, natural gas is highly flammable, and in case of gas leaks in Melbourne, the chances of fire and explosion increase substantially.
How Are Carbon Monoxide Dangerous?
Carbon monoxide is the result of improper natural gas combustion. Carbon monoxide is generally released from the water heaters, furnaces, and gas stoves. Being a colourless and odourless compound, carbon monoxide can be very dangerous. Scientists have proven that inhaling carbon monoxide can result in asphyxiation and death.
What Does Carbon Monoxide Do To Your Body?
Excessive exposure to carbon monoxide is very dangerous for your health. Just like any other gases, carbon monoxide has both short-term and long-term side effects. Given below are some side effects that you can experience with Carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Irritated eyes.
- Ringing in the ears.
- Reduced appetite.
- Pale skin tone.
This is just the start of your health problem list. If any home appliances are slowly releasing Carbon monoxide into the air, it can leave long-term health effects without your noticing.
Symptoms Of Gas Leaks
Many homes use natural gas for their home appliances, water heaters, and cooking stoves in Australia. Natural gas has no odour and no smell, which makes it impossible to detect any small leaks. And with small leaks, you will hardly find any hissing sound.
This is why gas companies add a harmless substance, mercaptan, in the gas that gives odour to the natural gas. Mercaptan smells like sulphur or rotten eggs and helps people identify any possible gas leaks.
If you experience any of the following, evacuate the area immediately.
- Smell sulphur or rotten eggs.
- Hear any whistling sound near the gas line.
- Seeing a damaged connection.
- Home plants are dying for apparent reasons.
If some unusually instead make you feel or suspect a gas leak, avoid touching any electrical appliances that might cause a spark. Instead, open the door and windows, leave the area, and call 911 for help.
What To Do If You Suspect Gas Leaks?
It is important that you are aware of your surroundings. We have already talked about symptoms that will help identify gas leak problems. Observe the symptoms as you walk around your house. If you feel like returning home has made your headache reappear, that means there is something wrong with your house.
If there is a mild gas odour, opening doors and windows will get the job done. You can also turn off your gas switches and call your gas provider to further take help from them.
However, if there are strong gas leaks and the symptoms show strongly, the best course of action will be to leave your house and call firefighters and your gas office. Ensure that a certified inspector takes care of this problem right away.
If you find any gas leaks in your home, here are the things that you need to avoid doing.
- Calling for help from inside the house. It is better that you secure you8r safety and call for help.
- Seeking out the source of the gas leaks. We know people can be curious in some most uncommon times, such as gas leak situations. Avoid doing this.
- Turning on electrical appliances. This might cause a spark.
- Not reporting to the emergency authority.
While natural gas leaks are rare, they do happen and sometimes can be very dangerous for the people living in the houses. Hence, it is important that you ensure to have a yearly inspection. This will help you avoid any unnoticed gas leaks.