How to Conduct an Emergency Shut Off of Your Utilities

How to Conduct an Emergency Shut Off of Your Utilities

Learn how you can safely shut off your home’s utilities in an emergency.

Because a natural disaster can strike with very little warning, it’s important that you have an emergency action plan in place for all possible situations.  According to FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), one of the first things you should do to secure your home and family after a natural disaster is shut off your home’s utilities.  Use this guide to learn how to safely turn off your utilities today.


During a natural disaster, damaged pipes can pollute the water supply.  To prevent this contaminated water from entering your home, you need to shut off your home’s water.  To complete this process, you will first need to find your main water shut off valve.  This valve should be located somewhere along your main water line.  Once you find the valve, turn the handle or knob clockwise until you feel it shut completely.  Once your water is off, keep it that way until your water supply has been declared safe for consumption.


Because a rouge electrical spark paired with a gas leak could cause a serious house fire, it’s important to make sure that you shut off your home’s electricity after an emergency.  Fortunately, this is a pretty straightforward process.  All you need to do is locate your home’s electrical circuit box and switch off all the circuits inside.  Once you do this, switch off your home’s main circuit breaker, which will be located at the top of the electrical panel.  Keep your electricity shut off until you are certain that there aren’t any gas leaks in your home.

Natural Gas

Finally, a natural disaster can cause a gas leak in your home.  Because a gas leak is damaging to your family’s health and increases your home’s risk for fire, shutting off your gas is one of the first things you should do following an emergency.  Every home has their own unique gas meter configuration, so you might have to contact your local utility company to learn the shut off procedure for your home.  Once you know the steps, post the instructions near your gas meter so anyone can turn off your gas in an emergency.  Be aware, while you can safely turn off your gas, you will require the assistance of a certified professional to turn it back on again.

Use this information to help you turn off your home’s utilities following a natural disaster.  Want another way to protect your home and loved ones during an emergency situation?  Then make sure you have the proper insurance protections in place.  To get the coverage you need, contact the experts at ISU-Wissink Insurance in Culver City, California.  Our dedicated professionals are ready to get you covered today.