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LATEST UPDATE: Road affected by gas leak opened for homeowners

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news Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Pioneer
(218) 333-9819 customer support
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

The work that was being done at the scene of the gas leak was a contractor who was plowing/boring in communication lines, not electrical as previously stated. The contractor advises that work continues but that local homeowners can return to their homes.

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However, the road will remain blocked to all others until the dirt has been returned to the excavation hole. The best access to Lakewood Drive is off of Irvine Avenue Northwest. Do not try to enter from the Bemidji Avenue North side unless you live at a house close to Bemidji Avenue North.

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Work continues on the natural gas line that was mistakenly cut while a crew was boring in order to place updated electrical lines.

The actual gas line was not premarked due to the fact that an old line was running under a new newer line and caused a mix-up on where the actual working line was. Thus, the crew was not aware of where the line was.

There is no estimation available on how much natural gas actually leaked into the air but the crew on scene has not been affected by it.

One house was evacuated just to be safe.

At this time, a bypass for the cut in the line is in place and crews are testing it to make sure it holds. Minnesota Energy will continue to be on scene but additional personnel have been dismissed. However, the road will remain blocked with access to homeowners only until the work is totally completed.

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The Beltrami County Sheriff's Office of Emergency Management advises that a 4-inch gas main was cut during a construction project at 8:08 a.m. Lakewood Drive Northwest.

After receiving the 911 call of the construction accident, Beltrami County Sheriff's deputies, Bemidji Fire and Bemidji Ambulance immediately responded to the scene and secured the area.

Lakewood Drive Northwest is located directly west of the Northwoods Access off of Bemidji Avenue North and extends to Irvine Avenue northwest.

Minnesota Energy also is on scene. A crew from Minnesota Energy just arrived to repair the cut.

No appliances in the area will be affected as gas is continuing to serve homes.

In the meantime, there is a section of Lakewood Drive Northwest that is closed to traffic between the intersection of Bemidji Avenue North and Queens Lane Northeast, with the exception of homeowners who have an immediate need to go to their home.

Emergency personnel donot expect immediate danger but are maintaining a perimeter to prevent problems. Citizens are advised to not use lighters or their cell phones in the area.

At this time, Bemidji Fire remains on scene assisted by the Beltrami County Mounted Posse and Beltrami County Sheriff's Community Guard to block the intersections.

The Pioneer will post updates as they become available.

The Beltrami County Sheriff's Office of Emergency Management advises that a 4-inch gas main was cut during a construction project at 8:08 a.m. Lakewood Drive Northwest.

After receiving the 911 call of the construction accident, Beltrami County Sheriff's deputies, Bemidji Fire and Bemidji Ambulance immediately responded to the scene and secured the area.

Lakewood Drive Northwest is located directly west of the Northwoods Access off of Bemidji Avenue North and extends to Irvine Avenue northwest.

Minnesota Energy also is on scene. A crew from Minnesota Energy just arrived to repair the cut.

No appliances in the area will be affected as gas is continuing to serve homes.

In the meantime, there is a section of Lakewood Drive Northwest that is closed to traffic between the intersection of Bemidji Avenue North and Queens Lane Northeast, with the exception of homeowners who have an immediate need to go to their home.

Emergency personnel donot expect immediate danger but are maintaining a perimeter to prevent problems. Citizens are advised to not use lighters or their cell phones in the area.

At this time, Bemidji Fire remains on scene assisted by the Beltrami County Mounted Posse and Beltrami County Sheriff's Community Guard to block the intersections.

The Pioneer will post updates as they become available.

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Pioneer staff reports
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