Six houses evacuated after gas line ruptures

August 26, 1994

Six houses evacuated after gas line ruptures

Six houses on Mount Lucas Road in Princeton Township were evacuated Wednesday afternoon after workmen ruptured a gas line, police said.

There were no injuries, township police Lt. Mario Musso said.

Detour signs were erected and people were forbidden to venture within a few hundred feet in either direction of the leak, he said.

The residents who were evacuated were allowed to return to their homes at 4:15 p.m., less than two hours after the rupture was discovered at 2:45 p.m., he said.

The rupture was caused by employees of J. Fletcher Cramer and Sons Construction Co. of Hackensack. he said. A crew was digging a 42-inch trench on Mount Lucas Road between the intersection of Red Hill and Ewing Street preparing for installation of a water main by Elizabethtown Water Co., Lt. Musso said.

They struck a 2-inch plastic gas service pipe belonging to Public Service Electric & Gas Co., sending natural gas into the atmosphere. he said.

“You could smell it,” he said.

The Princeton Fire Department, the Princeton First Aid Squad and a PSE&G crew arrived at 3:05 p.m, Lt. Musso said.

At 4:10 p.m., the PSE&G crew shut off the gas and capped the pipe, he said.

Initially, five customers were left without gas for 10 minutes while the gas main was shut off, PSE&G spokeswoman Priscilla Silber Brown said Thursday. But after the repair crew dug further, it discovered that the break was in a gas line to a single house. That customer’s service was restored by 4:30 p.m.. she said.

— Laurie Lynn Strasser

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