|Pipeline Safety > Pipeline Safety
Your safety is very important to us. New Mexico Gas Company is committed to the safe operation of the extensive network of underground natural gas pipelines we maintain. Our experienced engineering experts carry out comprehensive programs for the safe design, construction and operations of our pipelines, as well as ongoing inspections.
Natural gas has an outstanding safety record and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of Pipeline Safety states that pipelines have the best safety record of any other method of bringing natural gas to homes and businesses. As with any fuel, however, natural gas must be handled safely. While natural gas doesn’t explode on its own, it can ignite if there is a source of ignition and air.
As part of our ongoing safety program, New Mexico Gas Company works with public officials, emergency responders, excavation and construction companies, property owners and residents, and other groups along our transmission pipelines to keep people safe. Our public awareness communications seek to make sure that people know where our pipelines are located and what to do in the event of an emergency, such as a gas leak, fire, or serious incident at or near any of our facilities.
New Mexico Gas Company provides education and training for federal and local emergency responders and public officials in your area to prepare them to handle natural gas emergencies. We also provide specialized equipment to emergency responders. In the event of an emergency, emergency responders and New Mexico Gas Company personnel are trained to take immediate steps to protect lives and property, isolate the damaged pipeline and shut off the flow of gas. New Mexico Gas Company engineers and operations personnel then address the emergency, determine the cause and take appropriate corrective actions.
More detailed information on pipeline safety and New Mexico Gas Company’s Emergency Response Plans for emergency responders, public officials, and contractors and excavators can be found at the links on the left. You’ll also find information on our pipeline damage prevention programs, rights of way and easements, and pipeline integrity management.
For a copy of New Mexico Gas Company's brochure, "Pipeline Safety in Your Community," in English and Spanish, a pdf copy may be downloaded here.
What you can do
Preventing damage, recognizing a leak and knowing what to do in the event of a leak are important ways you can help ensure your safety and the safety of others.
Recognizing a gas leak
Natural gas is odorless and invisible so, as a safety precaution, a harmless additive is added to give gas a rotten egg or sulfur-like odor. You can recognize a natural gas leak in several other ways, including an unusual hissing noise, blowing dirt for no apparent reason, an unusual dry spot in the ground or dead vegetation for no apparent reason, bubbling water, and frozen ground in warm weather.
What to do if there’s a gas leak
If You Smell Gas or suspect a gas leak, don’t delay — get away! Get everyone away from the area or out of the building immediately, then call New Mexico Gas Company from a safe distance. Call us anytime day or night at 888-NM-GAS-CO (888-664-2726).
Do not do anything that might cause a spark, including turning on or off any electrical or battery-operated devices or using garage door openers, radios, televisions, computers or telephones. Avoid open flames. Do not strike a match or flick a lighter. Do not smoke.
Finally, do not return to the building until New Mexico Gas Company safety experts have given the all-clear.
America’s infrastructure, including pipelines, are a matter of national security. If you see any suspicious activity along a pipeline right-of-way, please report it to New Mexico Gas Company as quickly as possible by calling our emergency line at 888-NM-GAS-CO (888-664-2726). Emergency line operators are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.