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Buildings Temporarily Evacuated After Gas Main Break

By ADD SEYMOUR JR.

No one was injured after a natural gas main was ruptured just in front of the construction site for the new Parking Deck and Welcome Center at Morehouse College Thursday morning on April 24.

Gloster Hall, Gloster Hall Annex, The Leadership Center and the existing parking deck were briefly evacuated, but people were allowed back inside Gloster Hall and The Leadership Center an hour later. Gloster Annex and the existing parking deck remained shut down until early afternoon since they are a short distance from the ruptured main.

"There was a large gas leak," said Andre Bertrand, vice president for Campus Operations. "A normal procedure is to evacuate folks from buildings in the area."

The Atlanta Fire Department responded to the scene around 9:30 a.m., said AFD Capt. Alfredo Sealy.

"Sometimes construction companies, in digging and grading, hit gas mains," Sealy said. "A four-inch main was hit."

Both said the situation was quickly brought under control. Gas company officials were on the scene Thursday, trying to find the valve to shut off the natural gas. The natural gas scent was prevalent in the air, but posed no danger.

The situation returned to normal as everyone was allowed back into their offices by the afternoon.

Traffic flow in and out of the campus was temporarily re-directed to the Joseph E. Lowery entrance.

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