As TECO Peoples Gas officials continue to track Tropical Storm Erika, the company is prepared for any natural gas emergencies created by the storm or its aftermath. Should the storm hit Florida, Peoples Gas advises customers to leave their natural gas service on, even in the event of an evacuation. Customers should not attempt to turn gas off at their meters.

"The best and safest action for our customers is to follow emergency guidelines issued by the State Emergency Response Team," said Rick Wall, director of Gas Operations at TECO Peoples Gas. "Our crews are prepared and standing by to handle any emergencies created by Tropical Storm Erika."

If at any time residents smell a rotten egg odor, there could be a natural gas leak. Residents should leave the premises immediately and then call the Peoples Gas 24-hour Emergency Gas Leak number: 1-877-832-6747, select option 1.

Customers who suspect their natural gas appliances have been flooded or damaged due to the storm should have the equipment inspected and serviced by a qualified plumber or appliance service contractor.

Other helpful hints in the event of an evacuation:
  • Before evacuating, please first review the evacuation route information on the Florida Division of Emergency Management Web site ( www.FloridaDisaster.org). Roads may be closed to facilitate better traffic flow.
  • Have a functioning battery powered radio to monitor emergency information.
  • Make plans for pets as they are extremely vulnerable and are not allowed at most shelters.

For more information visit www.peoplesgas.com/safety.

Peoples Gas System, Florida's largest natural gas distribution utility, is part of the TECO Energy family of companies. Peoples Gas serves more than 350,000 customers across Florida. TECO Energy Inc. (NYSE: TE) is an energy-related holding company with regulated electric and gas utilities in Florida and New Mexico: Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas System and New Mexico Gas Co.

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