Earthquake Preparedness

Important safety measures to take.

Below are helpful hints to secure your home, and the steps to take in the event an earthquake occurs.

Before an earthquake:

  • Secure natural gas equipment, such as water heaters, to minimize movement during a quake.
  • Keep combustibles like paint cans and rags away from your furnace and water heater.
  • Replace semi-rigid gas connectors with flexible ones.
  • Review this information regarding shutting off your gas meter.
  • If you choose to install an earthquake shut-off valve (equipment that senses ground movement or shaking and shuts off the flow of gas automatically), you need to contact a qualified, licensed contractor. Click here to learn more.

After an earthquake:

  • After an earthquake, be sure that no flammable items have fallen or spilled near natural gas appliances.
  • If you detect a strong natural gas odor, it’s always safest to leave the area on foot and then call NW Natural at 800-882-3377.
  • DO NOT turn off your natural gas unless you smell gas, hear gas blowing or see other signs of a leak. ONLY turn off your gas if it is safe to do so.
  • If you turn off your gas, DO NOT turn it back on yourself. Leave it off and contact NW Natural. Appliances and natural gas lines will need to be checked for possible damage before service can be safely restored.
  • Be aware that in the event of a significant natural disaster, increased work volumes may cause service delays. It could be days before a service technician can be scheduled to restore service at your home.
  • If you chose to install an earthquake shut-off valve, you need to contact a qualified, licensed contractor to reset the valve and relight your natural gas appliances.

See information on turning off your home’s natural gas meter.

Learn more about earthquake shut-off valves and excess flow valves.