Safety in the home and on your property

Underground gas pipes and cables, as well as overhead power lines and other electricity and gas equipment are prevalent in and around properties. It’s easy to become complacent around them. By being aware of the potential hazards of electricity and gas around your home, you can help keep yourself and your whānau safe from accident and injury.

Gas safety

Gas smells a bit like rotten eggs. If you think you smell gas, it's important that you leave the immediate area and contact us on 0800 111 848 as there may be a leak.

We want people to report any suspicious gas smells to us, so we can investigate them and help keep you safe. Whether they turn out to be gas leaks or not, it’s better that people let us know if they think they smell gas, rather than ignoring it.

This is because gas is highly flammable, which means if there’s a leak, combined with the likes of a spark from lighting a candle, flicking a light switch or using a mobile phone – it could lead to explosion or fire. That’s why, before contacting us, you should leave the immediate area and not use any electrical devices, light switches, matches or mobile phones in the area, as this could ignite the gas. 

Gas safety

If you smell gas inside: 

  • Turn off gas appliances.
  • Don’t smoke (including e-cigarettes) and extinguish any naked flames.
  • Don’t use any electrical equipment, switches, mobile phones or electronic equipment.
  • Vacate the building.
  • Turn off the gas valve, if you can do so safely. The valve is next to your gas meter, outside the building (scroll down to learn how).

Call us on 0800 111 848 – we will give you the above guidance and help determine if you need to contact a gas fitter.

If you smell gas outside: 

  • Move away from the area upwind of the source. 
  • Don’t smoke (including e-cigarettes) and extinguish any naked flames. 
  • Close windows and doors to stop gas entering buildings. 
  • Turn off machinery if you can.

Call us on 0800 111 848  

How to turn off your gas valve

Your gas valve is next to your gas meter outside the building. Depending on your valve type, you may need a spanner to turn the gas off. 

Working close to overhead lines

Whether you’re painting the house, cleaning the guttering or trimming a tree, it may be tempting to do work near power lines around your property. 

Getting close to power lines is dangerous. To stay safe, it’s important to keep the recommended distance from lines around your property and, at all times, treat them live. 

To stay safe, keep yourself and any equipment at least 4m from overhead lines – electricity can jump to your equipment and you. Not doing so could lead to serious injury or death.

If you need to work around your service line – that’s the cable that runs from the power pole to your house, we provide a free safety disconnection.

Before starting any work near power lines around your property, learn how to do it safely.


Learn more

Working close to pipes and cables

Working close to pipes and cables can be dangerous and requires you take specific safety precautions to help you avoid injury. Learn more about the safety measures you can take when working close to underground pipes and cables around your property.


Learn more

Electrical safety

Earth pegs

Your earth peg is an important part of your building's electrical safety system. It ensures that any electrical faults inside the building go into the ground, keeping the people inside safe from serious shocks. Never touch your earth peg.

Earth pegs are usually near your electricity meter. If your earth peg is damaged or worn contact an electrician to ensure it's safe.

Pillar boxes

If you're connected to our network by underground cable rather than overhead line, you'll have a pillar box on your boundary or roadside.

Never touch your pillar box.

If your pillar box is damaged or in a location where it could be damaged (by a car for instance), contact us for an assessment.

Protecting your equipment

We do our best but when power surges happen they can damage appliances. Use surge protectors to protect your appliances, such as computers, televisions and whiteware. If you experience a power surge, switch appliances off at the wall.

If a power surge affects your appliances or internal wiring, contact your retailer (the company you pay your power bill to).

General safety if we have assets on your property 

  • Follow all safety or hazard notices displayed on our assets. 
  • Don’t touch assets. 
  • Don’t do anything that may damage assets. 
  • Keep trees at least 4m away from overhead lines. 
  • Don’t build or construct anything too close to assets. 

Planning to do work around our assets

If you plan to do work near the Powerco equipment on your property, it’s essential that you or your contractors are working safely. Find out more about safety when working around electricity or gas equipment. Contractor safety

Contact us

Contact us if you have concerns about the condition of Powerco-owned assets on your property, or if you feel it is becoming a hazard.