Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Gas leak forces evacuation of Goleta school


County firefighters evacuated hundreds of students from Goleta Valley Junior High School as a precautionary measure Tuesday morning after a nearby gas line sprung a leak.
A construction worker broke open the pipe while attempting to shut a gas valve near a home in the 600 block of Rossmore Road at 10:50 a.m., allowing gas to escape into the street, County Fire Capt. Eli Iskow said.

Due to the proximity of the leak to the school, firefighters evacuated 300 students and 20 faculty members to a sports field upwind from the incident.
Capt. Iskow said firefighters immediately plugged the broken line with a temporary seal until gas company workers arrived on the scene. Students and teachers returned to their classrooms approximately half an hour later, he said, once workers had tightly sealed off the leak.
No injuries or damage other than the broken gas line occurred, Capt. Iskow said, and there was no major threat to students at any time.
County firefighters also evacuated a building at UC Santa Barbara on Monday at 7:15 p.m. after receiving reports of a gas odor, he said. After going door-to-door to make sure students and teachers had left the building, firefighters narrowed down the source of the leak to a gas valve that had been left open.
Capt. Iskow said once the valve had been closed and the building appropriately aired out, students and lab workers were allowed to return.

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