Turning Off Utilities: Fairfax Prepares Day 19

Posted 4:32 p.m.

day 19 iconIn the aftermath of an incident, you may be required to turn off certain utilities in your home such as gas, water and electricity to control additional damage from a disaster.

It’s important to be prepared to do this.

  • Locate the electric, gas and water shut-off valves.
  • Keep necessary tools near gas and water shut-off valves.
  • Teach family members how to turn off utilities.
  • If you turn the gas off, a professional must turn it back on. Do not attempt to do this yourself.

If you rent an apartment, you may not have access to all of these utilities as some are common to a whole building, so be aware of what you are responsible for. If you have elderly neighbors who need assistance turning off utilities, please consider lending a hand.

Exclamation point iconTHE ASK: This weekend, familiarize yourself with what utilities you have in your home and learn how to turn them off, keep the needed tools nearby and teach others who live with you to know how, too. View this excellent resource from a fellow emergency management office that describes some of the basics.

TELL US you’ve done this:

  • Post a quick reply in this blog’s comments section below such as “I’ve done this.”
  • Use the Twitter hashtag #fairfaxprepares and tweet your accomplishment. Include photos if you’d like.
  • Like our special Facebook page for this campaign to leave comments and share tips with your friends.
  • Email us at publicaffairs@fairfaxcounty.gov that you accomplished an ask.


  • Click the links below to email, share on social media or print a hard copy. Thanks!

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About Fairfax County Emergency Information

Official emergency information about preparedness, response and recovery from Fairfax County Government.

6 responses to “Turning Off Utilities: Fairfax Prepares Day 19”

  1. Randy Allen says :

    We did this. Thanks.

  2. Anonymous says :

    Appreciate the info- However with gas and propane you tell me to turn off for future experience – however I might need a profssional to turn back on- Calling a plumber will be a $75 – $150 service fee. Sorry not appropriate info

    • Fairfax County Emergency Information says :

      Thanks for the message. You absolutely need a professional to turn your gas service back on to your home. It’s the standard across all gas utilities. You don’t want to risk damage or more serious consequences if you try it yourself. Here’s another resource page, this one from Ready.gov, where the last sentence shares that important tip: http://www.ready.gov/utility-shut-safety

      And here’s a search results page where every link says the same thing: do not attempt to turn your gas back on by yourself:


  3. Marathon Energy says :

    It’s inconvenient to have to call in a pro to turn the gas back on but it makes sense don’t want to break something that important beyond repair because you didn’t want to shell out $100