FerrellGas / slow to respond to an emergency
I reported a propane gas leak at my home at 7:08 in the morning on Tuesday, October 16. It took them over 2 hours to show up.
Here's a short version of what happened.
I was leaving the house at 7 am and was overwhelmed with the smell of propane when I walked out my front door. I immediately came back inside to get the phone and tell my husband to get dressed as I was certain we would have to evacuate. I called Ferrellgas and was told to close the doors and windows and stay inside, that a driver would be there. I asked how long, she said it would be this morning, before noon. I was quite taken aback by that timeline, but did as I was told and brought my dogs up to the back deck as well. While waiting for them to arrive, I kept going out to check on my dogs and the smell was getting less and less. An hour after my report to them, I called back to ask how much longer. She assured me someone would be out soon. I then got a call at about 8:20 a.m. from a regional manager stating that he'd gotten an email at 7:50 a.m. about the leak and was dispatching someone. At no point in time did anyone ask me to shut off the gas. It was nearly 9:00 in the morning when a driver showed up. He found there was indeed a leak, replaced the leaking regulator, then showed my husband and I how to shut off the gas. He was surprised they didn't tell me to shut off the gas. I was told that it was unfortunate that I called between 7 and 8 as that's kind of a void for emergency response as the crews are arriving at the office but they are not ready to be dispatched. I had called their emergency number and there was no emergency response or even a heightened sense of alert. If I had not called back, I'm not sure they would have responded at all. The smell was strong at 7 am because of the regulator malfunction, spouting pressured gas into the atmosphere; it would dissipate and the smell would lessen, but it was still a dangerous situation. I've had service with them for 17 years and have never called the emergency line. I wasn't just a nuisance caller.
I don't ever want this to happen to another family. I have tried to talk with them about it, and they just apologize that I felt stress, and don't address the problem. The problem is there is no emergency response between 7 and 8 a.m. in the morning. This could very well happen to another family, but apparently there is nothing regulating how they handle a report for smell of gas. Their representative is apparently required to tell me how to shut off the gas but never said a word about it.
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