Cok Kinzler PLLP

Beware of the hazards posed by propane gas in your home

Do you use propane gas to provide heat and hot water in your home, cook and generate electricity? Many homeowners in Bozeman and other cities in Montana find propane gas to be affordable and efficient, but did you know that it could also be deadly? It is crucial not to lose sight of the fact that gas lines or tanks can leak and the consequences can cost you your life or your home.

A knowledge of potential hazards and precautions to mitigate them is essential. You might also want to keep in mind that, in many cases of property damage and personal injury or wrongful death caused by propane leaks, the propane or utility companies are responsible.

Precautions and safety tips

Remember that even if the following notes seem to be common sense, you must instill propane safety in your children from an early age.

  • Always use the services of a qualified propane service provider to connect appliances and tanks.
  • Have the propane technician check for leaks after connecting appliances.
  • Living spaces and basements are not proper places to store portable propane tanks.
  • Never leave propane tanks in closed vehicles, and secure them properly for transportation -- even if they are empty.
  • Do not use a gas appliance as a space heater, and only use BBQ grills outdoors.

Did you know that running out of gas could be hazardous?

It is crucial to close the gas line or valve of a propane container after the gas ran out. Leaving it open will allow moisture and air to enter the tank and allow rust to build up inside the propane tank. Not only can that lead to leaks, but rust removes the typical odor of propane gas. When this happens, leaks will go undetected, creating the risk of a fire or explosion.

Propane detectors

Propane detectors will sound alarms when they detect the presence of gas in the air, providing added security. However, the quality of propane detectors is important, and so is proper installation by qualified technicians. Having service technicians check the detectors periodically is as important as having all the gas lines and appliances in your home inspected to ensure there are no leaks.

Your legal rights

In the event of a propane gas leak causing an explosion, or a defective gas detector failing to sound an alarm, the consequences could be devastating. Where does that leave you? Proving product liability is a complicated field of the law, and consulting with an experienced Montana personal injury attorney might be the sensible thing to do. A lawyer who knows how to navigate the varied and complex laws can investigate the case and provide the necessary advocacy throughout the ensuing legal proceedings in pursuit of damage recovery.

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