Emergency Preparedness Committee – Emergency Gas Earthquake Shutoff Valve

Every month should be on our radar for Emergency Preparedness, and I wanted to give you a heads-up on a device one of our Niguel Shores neighbors brought to my attention this past week.  We all know we are past due on “the big one” occurring in California, but unfortunately no one knows when, where, or how big it will be.

When a bigger earthquake happens you can be better prepared and protect your home and family with a simple device called an Emergency Gas Earthquake Shutoff Valve.  How does this device work? There are several different kinds, but they all work about the same. Basically, during an Earthquake, the ground and your gas meter, along with pretty much everything else, shakes and moves. This movement causes the mechanical parts in the Shut Off Valve to trip and a spring closes the valve opening automatically shutting off your gas flow and service.  Additionally, an Excess Flow Valve is available to shut off service when a significant gas leak or overpressure surge occurs at a pipe of appliance located beyond the point where the valve is installed. Both of these methods greatly prevent fire or explosion.

Some local jurisdictions in California have adopted ordinances requiring automatic gas shutoff devices at the time of building sale or during significant renovations.  Both the American Red Cross and local gas companies recommend both of these valves be installed for safety by a qualified professional/plumber.

Something to consider as you evaluate your ongoing list of things to insure your home and family are prepared for emergency situations.

– Kent Wellbrock

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