The Gas Company offers safety tips to customers returning home after firestorm evacuations

Media Contact:
Denise King

Southern California Gas Co.

(877) 866-2066


         LOS ANGELES, Oct. 26, 2007 – Southern California Gas Co. (The Gas Company) is asking customers returning home after having been evacuated to check their natural gas service and if service is off or they smell or hear a natural gas leak, to call The Gas Company at (800) 427-2200.

        “The safety of our customers, employees and the community is of highest priority,” said Michelle Mueller, vice president of customer service at The Gas Company.   “If you are able to return to your home, and you find your natural gas service is off, do not turn it back on -- call The Gas Company.”

        The Gas Company reports no major impacts to its natural gas pipeline transmission system, storage fields or other facilities from the fires.  The Gas Company crews are beginning to enter fire-damaged areas where allowed by fire officials to assess the extent of damage, repair damaged natural gas service lines and meters, and restore service to customers.  The Gas Company is requesting patience by customers in areas impacted by the fires as they begin the service restoration process.

        Company officials stress the following natural gas safety tips:


        • DO NOT shut off the natural gas meter unless there is the smell or sound of natural      gas escaping.

        • If there is the smell or sound of natural gas escaping, the natural gas should be manually turned off at the meter.  Using an adjustable wrench, make a quarter-turn of the valve, moving it from a vertical position to a horizontal position. This will shut off the flow of natural gas. 

        • If the odor is strong, leave the residence. Don’t flip a light switch when the smell of natural gas is strong.

        • If the natural gas meter is shut off, do not turn it back on until it has been inspected by a Gas Company energy technician.  Interior natural gas piping and appliances must be inspected for possible damage before service can be safely restored.

        Southern California Gas Co. has been delivering clean, safe and reliable natural gas to its customers for more than 140 years.  It is the nation’s largest natural gas distribution utility, providing safe and reliable energy to 20.1 million consumers through 5.6 million meters in more than 500 communities.  The company’s service territory encompasses approximately 20,000 square miles in diverse terrain throughout Central and Southern California, from Visalia to the Mexican border.  The Gas Company is a regulated subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE).


Sempra Energy , Southern California Gas Company