The Real Deal New York

New York Fire Department will respond to all gas odor reports

City will instruct residents to dial 911 rather than calling utilities provider

June 18, 2014 05:50PM

From left: 89 East 116th Street and the explosion site at 1644 Park Avenue on March 12

From left: 89 East 116th Street and the explosion site at 1644 Park Avenue on March 12

Following the deadly gas explosion that rocked East Harlem in March, the New York Fire Department is changing its policy on responding to gas odor reports. 

The New York Fire Department will now respond to all such reports, and the city plans to direct New Yorkers to dial 911 immediately if they smell gas.

The office of the mayor outlined those new rules in a report on the city’s underground infrastructure, the New York Times reported. According to the report, said the FDNY responds to 911 calls in about eight minutes, whereas Con Edison typically takes 20 to 25 minutes.

Con Edison receives about 30,000 reports of gas odors each year, about 40 percent of which are false alarms, the Times reported. The FDNY indicated that it is prepared to take on the responsibility of responding to all gas odor-related calls.

Last month Con Edison announced a pilot project to detect gas leaks using sensors mounted on roving trucks. [NYT] – Tom DiChristopher

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