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San Bruno Gas Scare: Leak Capped At Site Of 2010 Explosion

SAN BRUNO (CBS SF) - Crews have capped a gas leak Thursday morning at the site of the catastrophic 2010 San Bruno explosion and fire, according to fire officials.

A San Mateo Fire Department dispatcher said the call came at 10:48 a.m. reporting a gas leak at Earl Ave. and Glenview Dr.

The first-arrving crews reported a heavy smell of gas and began to evacuate a one-block radius.

The 2-inch distribution main line burst around 10:45 a.m. Thursday when a private contractor working for the city of San Bruno struck the pipe with a backhoe in the Crestmoor neighborhood, at the same intersection where the previous blast occurred, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. spokeswoman Brittany Chord said.

PG&E crews were on-scene by 11 a.m. and stopped the gas flow in less than half an hour, Chord said.

"We worked very closely with our first responders on the scene to shut the gas off as quickly as possible," Chord said.

She added the line was not fitted with excess flow valves, which are designed to trip automatically when there is a break in a distribution line, the narrow-diameter pipes that serve individual homes and businesses.

San Bruno City Manager Connie Jackson said about 14 homes were evacuated for about 30 minutes, largely because the winds began to pick up in the area.

The construction job that caused the break in the line has been halted, and city officials will investigate how it was hit and adopt precautions so the construction can resume, Jackson said.

On September 9, 2010 a 30-inch gas pipeline exploded and caused a massive fire in the same Crestmoor neighborhood, killing eight people and destroying dozens of homes.


(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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