Lloydminster homeowners and business owners are being reminded to check their natural gas meters, external vents and rooftop heating equipment as the cold weather may have caused some snow and ice buildup.

Blockages in vents and in chimneys can cause poor ventilation and air supply in the home causing a buildup of carbon monoxide. The odourless, colourless gas is poisonous and deadly. Low exposure to carbon monoxide may cause flu-like symptoms and high exposure can lead to convulsions, unconsciousness, brain damage or death.

Homeowners are reminded to check to see if their carbon monoxide alarms are working and to have them inspected every year.

SaskEnergy notes ice buildup can also affect the natural gas regulator which prevents pressure from building up on gas supply lines inside a building. Homeowners and business owners are asked to take a walk around their building and ensure the vents, outputs and natural gas meters have been cleared of snow and ice.

SaskEnergy recommends people to remove the buildup by hand and not to use sharp objects to chip away at the ice and do not hit or kick the meter. They also say do not use a snowplow or snow blower near the meter.

If a homeowner does not have the tools to remove the buildup, they are asked to call their natural gas company or a plumber to clear the equipment. SaskEnergy says they respond to gas leaks caused by damage to meters due to heavy snow, ice buildup or improper snow removal every winter.