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Natural Gas Leaks

The City Long Beach Energy Resources Department operates and maintains natural gas pipelines in the Cities of Long Beach and Signal Hill. Although it is extremely unlikely for a pipeline incident to occur, we are providing you with the following information to assist you in identifying a possible natural gas leak.

For gas to burn, it must mix with the proper amount of air and be ignited by a flame or spark. Burning natural gas without enough air produces carbon monoxide, a deadly poison. Pure natural gas is colorless and odorless. A chemical odorant is added that gives natural gas a distinctive, sulfur-like odor.

A faint odor of gas may mean that a burner has been left on, or a pilot light is out. A strong odor means you should leave the home at once and call 911 and Long Beach Energy Resources. Your gas-burning equipment should be inspected regularly by a qualified service person. Check vents, flue pipes, connections, and chimney’s periodically for rust or blockages.

California requires all single-family homes with natural gas-burning appliances, fireplaces, or attached garages to be equipped with approved carbon monoxide detectors.

There are three ways to detect a natural gas leak:


The presence of an unusual odor similar to rotten eggs.

Ear IconSound

An unusual noise coming from the ground, similar to a hissing or roaring sound.

See - EyeSight

Dying vegetation around the pipeline and/or a dust cloud over the ground.

If you detect a natural gas leak, follow these steps:

  1. DO NOT light a match, start an engine, use a cell phone, or turn on a switch.
  2. Immediately and safely leave the area and warn others to stay away.
  3. From a safe location, call 911 or the Energy Resources Department at (562)570-2140.
For more information, check out our Natural Gas Safety at Home brochure.

Proposition 65

The State of California's Proposition 65, the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, intent is to protect California citizens and the State's drinking water sources from substances known to cause cancer, birth defects, or other reproductive harm, and to inform citizens about exposures to such substances.

The Long Beach Energy Resources Department would like to help you minimize exposure to substances on the State's list. Here are some things to watch for:

Appliances Services

We will inspect and adjust the pilots on your natural gas appliances and equipment, and show you how to use and maintain your appliances correctly and efficiently. If you have questions about the safe operation of your natural gas appliances, please call (562) 570-5700.

Natural Gas Leaks

Natural gas contains small amounts of substances that are on the State's list. If you are near a natural gas leak, exposure to these substances is possible. If you smell a very strong odor of natural gas, leave the area and, from a safe distance, call us immediately at (562) 570-2140 to report the odor and location.

Natural Gas Combustion

Combustion, including burning natural gas, produces substances on the State's list. To minimize the potential for possible exposure, always operate natural gas equipment according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Facilities and Work Sites

Some equipment and materials, such as paint, welding rods, and gasoline, used by Energy Resources Department at its random work sites throughout Long Beach and Signal Hill, contain substances on the State's list. We handle these items cautiously and in accordance with applicable safety standards. Nonetheless, exposure to substances on the State's list, including tobacco smoke, is possible at any of these work sites.

For a complete State of California Proposition 65 list, visit OEHHA at: www.oehha.ca.gov/prop65