Buildings on Tallinn's Jõe tänav evacuated after major gas leak
A major gas leak in a central Tallinn street led to nearby buildings being evacuated Friday morning.
The leak, from a pipeline on Jõe tänav, was caused by damage inflicted in the course of extensive roadworks being carried out on that street.
The emergency center (Hairekeskus) was notified of the damage at 9.09 a.m. Friday, while the Rescue Board (Päästeamet) personnel were dispatched to evacuate residents and workers in nearby buildings.
Noone was injured as a result of the incident.
Six buildings are affected, while both gas emergency technical personnel and the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) are on the scene.
A 100 meter stretch of Jõe tänav has been designated a danger zone, meaning the street, already part-closed due to the roadworks, is fully closed to traffic.
The road would certainly not be reopened to traffic before 11.15 a.m., the PPA said earlier on Friday.
The two affected pipelines were closed off just after 11.00 a.m, though as of 11.40 a.m. the danger zone was still in place.
The damage concerns two gas mains, one of which is already sealed off; AS Gaasivõrk, which owns the pipelines, says a total of 16 consumers of natural gas are affected by the incident, all of them business customers.
Restoring the gas supply could take up to four hours, the Rescue Board said.
The PPA has also requested drivers and pedestrians avoid the vicinity while the emergency is being dealt with.
The roadworks are part of a renovation plan which takes in nearby Pronksi and Raua streets; Jõe runs in a north-south direction and links Narva mnt to Reidi tee, Ahtri tee and the ferry harbor area.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte, Marko Tooming