People are asked to avoid the area as work continues Thursday night.
CLAREMONT, N.C. — UPDATE: The City of Claremont confirmed the gas leak is now contained, but roadways aren’t expected to reopen until 8 a.m. on Friday, July 2.
City of Claremont officials confirmed Thursday evening that crews are still working the scene of a major gas leak.
According to a news release from the city, the downtown area was evacuated as a precaution after a construction contractor hit a gas line under West Main Street earlier in the day.
An evacuation was ordered for people and businesses on Main Street between Church Street and Lookout Street. Traffic was also being halted, extending out to Oxford Street to the west.
Claremont police and fire departments responded to the gas leak call around 12:15 p.m. and confirmed the line was damaged.
Piedmont Natural Gas also responded to the scene and confirmed they were not able to immediately shut off the gas.
To help with the scene, Piedmont called in specialized personnel from Georgia. The team is expected to arrive later in the night to evaluate the area and start repairs.
“Depending on whether they can stop gas flow prior to working on the line, we are told to expect the need to maintain the evacuation area between 12 and 24 hours from the beginning of the incident,” the city said in a news release.
People experiencing any emergencies during this time are asked to call 911.
This continues to be a developing story. WCNC will provide updates as they become available. You can also monitor updates by visiting the City of Claremont, NC Facebook page.
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