Residents evacuated after gas line breaks

ESCANABA – Residents living in the area around the area of 14th Avenue North and North 22nd Street are back in their homes after being evacuated Friday afternoon when a natural gas line was struck sending a geiser of natural gas and dirt into the air.

DTE Energy was on scene when Escanaba Public Safety officer arrived at the gas leak shortly after 1 p.m. The leak is believed to have been caused when a crew installing underground fiber optic cables struck a larger-sized, steel gas line.

Officers on scene evacuated homes in a one block radius surrounding the leak while DTE officials began digging down to the pipe by hand.

“They’re going to try to clamp it or they’re going to have to crimp the line,” said Public Safety Sgt. Jamie Silverstone during the incident, adding that DTE believed they would have the leak fixed by the end of the day.