Technical Safety BC urges BC residents to take gas and electrical precautions as threat of flooding looms

Flooding in BC and appliance safety

Our flooding article was updated 19 February, 2020

Flooding and appliance safety in BC

As residents in many areas of BC brace for flooding caused by higher-than-usual snowpack, Technical Safety BC is issuing a reminder about the importance of taking precautions around gas and electrical appliances. 

If flooding or evacuation is expected and time permits, try to:

  • Have a licensed gas contractor remove gas equipment and systems.
  • Have a licensed gas contractor cap the gas pipe leading to appliances.
  • Relocate or remove electrical appliances and have a licensed contractor isolate electrical circuits
  • Secure propane tanks to a stable structure to keep them from floating away.
  • Shut off the main gas and electrical supply.

If time does not permit due to flooding, simply:

  • Shut off the main gas and electrical supply.
  • Ensure that all valves and power knobs on all appliances and systems are turned off.
  • Shut off the water leading to and from hot water tanks.
  • Secure propane tanks to a stable structure.

Returning home after flooding has taken place requires another set of procedures because electrical equipment and gas appliances exposed to flood waters can be dangerous if they are re-energized and used without being properly inspected by a licensed contractor. Moisture, debris and contaminants in flood-damaged equipment or appliances can sometimes be hidden and cause serious risks. It is important to have the area of occupancy and its contents declared safe by the proper authorities and experts following health & safety protocols.

If your power has been turned off, you should contact your power / gas supplier (e.g., BC Hydro, Fortis, etc.) to have it turned back on. If water has entered the building, equipment must be looked at by a licensed electrical or gas contractor before it can be reconnected. To locate one in your area, visit our Find a Contractor page.

Technical Safety BC is an independent, self-funded organization mandated to oversee the safe installation and operation of technical systems and equipment. In addition to issuing permits, licences and certificates, we work with industry to reduce safety risks through assessment, education and outreach, enforcement, and research.

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