A worker digging in the side yard of a Valley Cottage home damaged a natural gas line serving several homes, sending gas roaring out of the broken pipe, according to firefirefighters.
No one was injured in the incident and no homes were damaged. Several homes in the Miller Road neighborhood, however, did lose natural gas service from the accident.
Valley Cottage Fire Chief said a worker digging by hand in the yard of 9 Miller Road damaged the gas line at about 10:10 a.m. Gerber said the worker was drying to dig around the line, but hit and broke the pipe.
The broken pipe unleashsed what Gerber described as a roaring plume of natural gas. The worker and residents of the home, he said, evacuated the immediate area of the gas leak and were sent further away from the home when volutneer firefighters arrived.
Gerber said Orange and Rockland Utilities crews responded to the accident quickly but were unable to reach local controls to reduce the stream of gas in that area. He said O&R workers were able to make a temporary fix that greatly reduced the escaping gas until the flow could be shut off.
. and volunteer firefighters were called in to standby in case the situation worsened. Gerber said he kept fire trucks about a block away, with hose lines stretched to the house in case fire broke out.
Firefigthers were at Miller Road for about two hours. While minor gas line breaks are common throughout Rockland County, volunteer firefighters and other emergency officials have had a heightened awareness of the dangers of such incidents since a gas line accidents destroyed a home in and more recently set off a in downtown Nyack.