Gas Leak Prompts Neighborhood Evacuation

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBCSanDiego

    Some San Diego Gas and Electric customers were without service Monday morning after a gas leak forced them out of their homes Sunday night.

    The leak was reported about 5:30 p.m. Sunday in the 1700 block of Penasco Drive in an unincorporated area of El Cajon.

    An SDG&E crew was already in that neighborhood checking on a power outage when they smelled gas in the air.

    Gas Leak Prompts Neighborhood Evacuation

    [DGO] Gas Leak Prompts Neighborhood Evacuation
    An SDG&E crew was already in that neighborhood checking on a power outage when they smelled gas in the air. Source: Gas Leak Prompts Neighborhood Evacuation | NBC San Diego

    Fifty-seven homes and a health care center were evacuated as a precaution.

    “We didn't hesitate. We just grabbed everything we had and walked out the door,” said resident Forrest Clark. “You don’t have to think twice. Just get moving.”

    During the evacuation, people were asked to walk out of their homes. They were not allowed to drive for fear that the ignition from their cars could spark a fire with the gas in the air.

    For residents, it was unsettling after last week's gas line explosion in San Bruno.

    “This certainly brings the San Bruno incident to the forefront of the minds of many residents,” said Leonard Villareal, San Miguel Fire District spokesperson. “So while people were inconvenienced with the evacuation, many were ready and willing and able to move out quickly because they now know what can happen.”

    "Like any citizen, they're concerned, and we want to make sure, they want to make sure they're doing it right and we'd rather be safe than sorry," said resident J.J. Hunter.

    SDG&E crews were able to shut off the gas line but it took awhile for them to purge it of gas before residents were allowed back into their homes.