Gas leak closes roads, evacuates homes, school in New Haven

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– Three homes and a school have been evacuated in New Haven after a gas leak closed several roads Wednesday morning.

Police and fire officials are on the scene investigating a cracked gas line.  Police and fire officials closed Canner Street from Prospect Street to Livingston Street. Parts of Autumn Street, Everit Street, Livingston Street, Loomis Place, St. Ronan Street, and Whitney Avenue are all closed..

Whitney Ave. now closed in #NewHaven, along with Irvington, Canner, and St. Ronin. Lots of bad traffic in East Rock section of town.

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

Livingston St. in #NewHaven now closed right by the Worthington Hooker School as crews work to find and shut off gas leak. pic.twitter.com/P2RovlNKEP

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

Gas leak has closed Canner St. in #NewHaven between Whitney and Prospect. Fire Dept believes it is a cracked gas line. Three homes evacuated as precaution. pic.twitter.com/zRqNynJ0RZ

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

It was about 4:30 in the morning when the call came in. People in a house on Canner Street smelled natural gas. The Fire Department came out with gas monitoring equipment. Zero percent is ideal.

“And they found percentages of 38%,” said Assistant Chief Orlando Marcano of the New Haven Fire Department. “The building was immediately evacuated. no signs, no symptoms. They metered the buildings adjacent. They found lower readings.”

All three buildings were evacuated. Officials went door-to-door on Whitney Avenue and Canner Street informing residents of the gas leak.

#NewHaven police just told workers at Worthington Hooker School to evacuate. Canner St. now closed at Livingston St. Search for source of gas leak continues.

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

Southern Connecticut Gas sent crews in to look for the source. A backhoe and jackhammer started tearing up pavement. They knew there are 2 16 inch gas mains under there, but in these cold temperatures, the source of a leak can be hard to find.

“Because of the weather and the frost, it can travel, and when it travels, it can be difficult,” said Marcano. “So what we do is, we vent it, and when we vent it, we can find it by the higher concentration of where it would be.”

SCG workers taking readings to determine extent of gas leak on Canner St. near Whitney in #NewHaven. pic.twitter.com/Lo7hymZSQC

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

Crews still searching for the location of the #new haven gas leak. Now digging in front of Worthington Hooker School. pic.twitter.com/VnWYti3R06

— Kent Pierce (@kentpierce8) January 3, 2018

The search took crews more than two blocks further down Canner Street to a spot right in front of the Worthington Hooker School. All those Kindergarten through second grade students were diverted to the Hooker school for higher grades a couple blocks away. The search for the source of the leak continues.

“They’re still venting so that they can isolate so they can shut off, so they don’t know the exact source at this moment,” Marcano said.

There are no further details at this time. Check back for more updates.