UNION — A street was closed and six houses evacuated after an equipment malfunction caused a natural gas leak Monday.
Joe Nichols, director of the City of Union Utility Department, said natural gas division personnel were attempting to repair a gas line running along South Boyce Street around 5 p.m. when the malfunction occurred.
“It was an older, four-inch steel gas line that had some deterioration,” Nichols said. “We were trying to put what we call a stopper valve in the line when the mechanism used to install it malfunctioned. We were not able to put the stopper valve on and so we had gas blowing out for a short period of time.”
Nichols said that while city personnel worked to repair the line, South Boyce Street was closed to traffic and six houses near the site evacuated as a safety precaution. He said firefighters from the Union Public Safety Department were called to the scene to stand by in case their help was needed.
“We called in the fire department to stand by while we made sure we get everything back together and shut it down,” Nichols said. “We got it shut down and the street reopened and the people back in their homes after about two hours.”
A utility crew was back at the scene Tuesday morning preparing to finish fixing the line.
“We’re cutting off the lines on some of the streets off of South Boyce Street in order to reduce pressure on the line while we install the valve and repair the line,” Nichols said. “We should have it completed today.”
Nichols said Tuesday afternoon that city personnel completed the repairs around 2 p.m. He said a new section of line replaced the deteriorated section and the stopper valve was installed.
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