She walked into her apartment and smelled it. Gas.
Her neighbor constantly complained about smelling gas, getting headaches, nausea, etc. She and her family were not experiencing the same gas situation. Every once in a while she could smell something, but it was usually just a moment of it, or she chalked it up to being the smelly stinky garbage, or residuals from the apparently gassy apartment next door.
In the past month, 2 different visitors commented on the gas smell. Hmmmm....she started wondering if there really was a gas leak, and she was just used to the smell. She decided to pay more attention to her surroundings.
She walked in yesterday and she definitely smelled it. Yes. Gas. In this one spot...the same spot that everyone else smelled it. She remembered her neighbor mentioning calling 311, the city's help line for anything from rodent control to alternate side of the street parking. She decided to take matters into her own hands. She made the call...very casual like...just wondering if there was any city agency that could come by and check the air.
The 311 operator almost immediately patched her through to 911 despite her protests, she said:
"BUT...it's not an emergency, my life is not in danger, I have been living here for months...really....I don't need the fire department....." too late.
She spoke to the dispatcher and again protested, but the call ended this way:
"We're on the way."
3 minutes later she heard sirens from outside. A lot of sirens. 4 and a half minutes later, 4 large fire trucks, filled with uniformed fire fighters blocked the street in front of her building. She found herself straightening up the house for them...pillows here, blankets folded, dishes in the sink, make the bed...
She waited and after walking the several flights in full gear and weaponry, they appeared with their air meter thingy. At first it wasn't picking anything up, but then after pulling out the oven, there it was! A leak.
She was so glad it was actually SOMETHING, and not her imagination. She offered them homemade cookies from the freezer (kept specifically for any firefighters that might need to drop by : ) ), and after they declined, they left.
5 minutes later, 3 of the workers from her building came up and fixed the leak. She thought to herself: Well, I guess I should have just told THEM about it and not gotten the entire fire department involved. 30 minutes after they had declared the leak fixed (but not the oven...it was not going back in flush with the wall quite right), the ConEd guys showed up. They also tested the leak, and since it was now fixed, her air passed the test!
Again, she felt relieved and so well taken care of by ALL of New York's Finest...and JUST in time for Third Person Thursday too...