Archive for Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Natural gas odors cause stir in city

May 30, 2007

Tonganoxie City firefighters responded to several homes last week because residents detected strong odors of natural gas fumes, but the calls turned out to be false alarms.

Capt. John Callaghan said the department first investigated the strange smell at several houses throughout the city beginning Wednesday. Firefighters checked out each residence, but their equipment revealed that there were no hazardous gas readings. After contacting Kansas Gas officials, firefighters learned system maintenance that had been done was allowing a stronger-than-normal odor level in the system.

Firefighters continued to receive calls through Monday from residents reporting a strange odor, but no hazardous fumes were found in those instances either.

Although the odors turned out to be false alarms, Callaghan stressed that residents should always contact the fire department if they smell anything suspicious.

"If they smell gas they need to call, plain and simple," Callaghan said. "There's no way of knowing. If you have the smell, there's a possibility of gas.

"The only way to check is with the monitoring equipment."

Callaghan said it also was important for residents to first call the fire department and then the gas company.

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