Third-Party Contractor Causes Natural Gas Leak In Downey Prompting Evacuations

A natural gas leak was reported in Downey Thursday afternoon.

Video Transcript

- Well, did you get an alert on your phone this afternoon about a gas leak in Downey? Southern California Gas says that a contractor hit a gas line on Rives Avenue near Stewart and Gray Road. This was during some street work. There were some homes in that area that had to be evacuated.

And you can see just how much gas was shooting up and the massive hole in the sidewalk. Take a look at that. People were being told to avoid the area, and police were diverting traffic and helping with evacuations of a small area nearby. Crews were using a fire hose to keep water on the gas to prevent it from igniting.

Southern California Gas called it a routine incident and had a crew on scene working to repair the break. The Downey fire department says that it was testing its system for emergency alerts when this happened, and the settings weren't right. That's why the alert went to such a wide area, instead of just to Downey residents.