New Law in Effect to Prevent Future Gas Leak Tragedies Property Managers and Building Owners Should Take Note of Local Law No. 153

Cleanup of the 2015 East Village explosion and fire in New York City (By MusikAnimal via Wikimedia Commons).

In March  2015, an illegal tap on a gas line caused an explosion in a residential building in the East Village. Two lives were lost and three buildings were leveled. In the aftermath, it became clear that while the city required inspections of many building systems, it was not the case for gas lines.

The New York City Council worked to remedy that, and in December, 2016, a package of bills was signed into law by Mayor Bill de Blasio. Among those bills included Local Law No. 153, which went into effect last month.(The Federation of New York Housing Cooperatives & Condominiums recently posted about the new law on its website). It amends the city’s administrative code to require building and apartment owners to post signage alerting residents and potential tenants on the proper protocol if a gas leak is suspected.

The bill reads:

The owner of a dwelling shall deliver or cause to be delivered to each tenant and prospective tenant of such dwelling, along with the lease or lease renewal form for such tenant or prospective tenant, and shall post and maintain in a common area of the building containing such dwelling, a notice, in a form developed or approved by the department, regarding the procedures that should be followed when a gas leak is suspected. Such notice may be combined with any existing required notices and shall instruct tenants to first call 911 and then call the relevant gas service provider, whose name and emergency phone number shall be set forth on such notice, before contacting such owner or an agent thereof when a gas leak is suspected.

A failure to post and provide such notice could lead to the issuance of a violation. 


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