Is Propane Safe?

The propane industry has developed numerous methods to make the transport and use of propane safe:

  • Propane equipment and appliances are manufactured to rigorous safety standards.
  • Propane has a narrow range of flammability when compared with other petroleum products and has the lowest flammability range of any fossil fuel.  In order to ignite, the propane/air mix must contain from 2.2 percent to 9.6 percent propane vapor.  If the mixture contains less than 2.2 percent gas, it is too lean to burn.  If it contains more than 9.6 percent, it is too rich to burn.
  • Propane will not ignite when combined with air unless the source of ignition reaches at least 940 degrees Fahrenheit.  In contrast, gasoline will ignite when the course of ignition reaches only 430 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • If liquid propane leaks, it doesn’t puddle but instead vaporizes and dissipates into the air.
  • Because it is released from a pressured container as a vapor, propane can’t be ingested like gasoline or alcohol fuels.  Propane is a nontoxic, nonpoisonous fuel that doesn’t contaminate aquifers or soil.
  • Because propane is virtually odorless and colorless in its natural state, a commercial odorant is added so propane can be detected if it leaks from its container.