Propane Gas Recall: Missing Odor Needed to Detect Leak

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced yesterday that approximately 919,000 barrels of propane (LP) gas have been recalled by Valero Marketing & Supply Company, as the gas may not contain an odorant that is added to propane to enable people to detect a gas leak.

The propane gas recall involves barrels that were distributed by a number of different companies in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Mississippi and Tennessee between January 2008 and October 2008.

Propane, also known as liquefied petroleum gas (LP), is commonly used for residential central heating, barbecues, portable stoves and engines. However, the highly flammable and explosive gas is tasteless, colorless and odorless in its natural state.

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The odorant ethanethiol is added to propane to help people detect a gas leak, by giving the propane an artificial scent.

The Valero propane recall was issued because some of the nearly 1 million barrels distributed may not have the recommended level of odorant. If this causes someone not to smell a gas leak, it could pose a substantial risk of fire, explosion, burns and other catastrophic injuries.

The recalled propane may have been purchased from the following retailers:

  • Alabama: Country Gas and Dowdle Gas
  • Arkansas: Famers Supply
  • California: Aeropres Corp., Amerigas Propane, Enterprise Products, Ferrell North America, Heritage Propane, Kiva Energy, Mutual Liquid Gas and Equipment, Pacific Coast Propane LLC, Sal’s Propane, Inc., Suburban Propane, LP, Targa, Liquids Marketing, Ted Johnson Propane Co. and United Pacific Energy
  • Mississippi: Columbus Butane, Coombs Gas, Dowdle Gas, Enterprise LP, Graeber Bros., Johnson Propane Gas, F.O. James, Pontotoc Butane Gas, Rebel Gas and Thomas LP
  • Tennessee: Baker Gas & Oil, Brownsville Utility, Coombs Gas, Dixie Gas, Dowdle Gas, Tennergy and Wilder LP Gas

Consumers who purchased propane between January 2008 and October 2008 are being advised to immediately contact their propane gas supplier or the retail location where they had a home propane tank or portable cylinder filled. It may be necessary for the propane to be tested and to receive additional odorant to help detect a propane gas leak.

Additional information can be obtained directly from Valero Marketing & Supply Co. at (866) 940-8235, or by visiting their website

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