With cooler temperatures and the heating season on the horizon, PECO customers will be using more natural gas to heat their homes and businesses. Just as PECO prepares its natural gas and electric systems for winter, customers should prepare too. Heating systems should be checked now and inspected by a qualified technician to ensure safe and efficient operation for the season ahead. "Many of our customers will be increasing their use of natural gas with cooler temperatures arriving in the Mid-Atlantic region, so we are asking them to be mindful about natural gas safety," said Ron Bradley, vice president of Gas Operations. "PECO is committed to ensuring safe and reliable natural gas service for our customers. In addition, it's vital for our customers to maintain their heating equipment and to know how to recognize and report any natural gas issues." Customers and residents also should remember the following important information about natural gas:
- Natural gas has no natural odor, so an odorant is added to help detect when a leak occurs.
- Leaks can be caused by construction or by ground movement during winter's deep freeze.
- Reporting a natural gas odor promptly plays a critical role in ensuring safety.
- If you smell a faint odor of natural gas, check to see if a pilot light is out or if a burner is partially on. If you cannot find the source, call PECO.
- If you smell a very strong odor of natural gas:
- Evacuate immediately and call 911 and PECO from outside
- Do not turn any electrical switches on or off
- Do not use devices such as phones, radios, doorbells or flashlights
- Do not smoke, strike a match or use a lighter
- Do not start a motor vehicle near the building
- If you smell natural gas outside, especially near a natural gas meter, call PECO.
- Keep exhaust vents for natural gas appliances like water heaters, furnaces and fireplaces, clear of snow and ice to prevent buildup of carbon monoxide.
- Keep natural gas meters clear of ice and snow by using a broom or brush to gently clear the area around the meter.
For more information about natural gas safety, visit peco.com/safety.Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC). The company's 2,400 dedicated employees provide advanced, innovative energy solutions to 1.6 million electric and more than 511,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. In 2015 PECO delivered 86.9 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 38 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $4.5 billion in Pennsylvania, supporting more than 9,600 local jobs and producing $760 million in labor income. Founded in 1881, PECO is one of the Greater Philadelphia Region's most active corporate citizens, providing leadership, volunteer and financial support to numerous arts and culture, education, environmental, economic development and community programs and organizations. For more information visit PECO.com , and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter . If you are a member of the media and would like to receive PECO news releases via email, please send your email address to PECO.Communication@exeloncorp.com .