MRO Magazine

Gas and electrical equipment safety in wildfires

July 21, 2017 | By MRO Magazine

New Westminster, BC – Drying conditions contribute to an elevated risk of wildfires across many parts of the province. For residents in areas with a high risk of fire, there are potential hazards associated with gas and electrical equipment. BC Safety Authority (BCSA) reminds homeowners and businesses to take precautions with gas and electrical appliances if fire, evacuation, or loss of power due to fire is expected.

In the event of an active evacuation order, folIow the instructions of authorities.  Do not remain in your home or business.  But if evacuation is anticipated and time allows, do the following:

  • Shut off the main gas supply.
  • Unplug non-essential electrical appliances.
  • Remove portable propane cylinders.
  • Ensure that all valves and power knobs on appliances and systems are turned off.
  • Shut off the water leading to hot water tanks.

Prior to returning to your home or business following an evacuation, it is important to have the area of occupancy declared safe to enter by the proper authorities.

Follow these precautions when returning to a fire-damaged area:

  • Complete all safety requirements of authorities (police, fire officials).
  • If you smell rotten eggs, it is likely natural or propane gas. Leave the area immediately and call your gas utility, propane supplier, or 911.
  • Do not plug in or turn on any damaged appliance or system. Call licensed gas and electrical contractors to do an inspection first.

For more information on fire, flood or evacuation alerts, visit the Emergency Information BC website:

Additional gas and electrical safety information for homeowners, including how to locate a licensed contractor in your areas is available on the BCSA website at:

BC Safety Authority is an independent, self-funded organization mandated to oversee the safe installation and operation of technical systems and equipment. In addition to issuing permits, licences and certificates we work with industry to reduce safety risks through assessment, enforcement, research and education.

Source: British Columbia Safety Authority


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