Eversource crews restore gas to residents in Vernon

A gas leak has shut down Merline Road in Vernon. (WFSB photo)

An underground natural gas line was punctured in Vernon on Friday morning that caused a leak and lead to closed streets and power outages.

Police said the leak was from a gas main that was struck by a construction crew working in the area of Route 30 and Merline Road on Friday morning.

"We were digging for water main and the guy (hit) the gas main and told me to shut the road down," Jeff Smith, who was in charge of traffic control for the crews, said. "So, I shut the road down and within minutes, there was police and fire crew."

Merline Rd will remain closed between RT 30 and Vernwood Dr during extended repair. Estimated at least 12 hrs.— Vernon CT Police (@VernonCTPolice) October 28, 2016

Merline Road was closed to traffic until 5 p.m.

"I took the signs down and made sure nothing came in or out," Smith said.

According to Eversource, 141 gas customers were affected by the leak. To check outages in your area, click here.

Swarms of Eversource workers could be seen digging all morning. Police said the gas restoration process started around 3 p.m.

Eversource workers were going door-to-door to restore service and check everyone's equipment. If safe, they will light the pilot to restore gas flow to customers in this area.

Crews walked residential neighborhoods talking with customers and asking someone be home before they re-energize the system, allowing for natural gas to flow again.

Eversource also advised homeowners to call 911 if they smell gas. Customers, who come home later Friday evening and were without natural gas service, should call Eversource at 1-800-989-0900.

Eversource said it had to shut off natural gas to the area, so repairs could be made.

Deborah Linier, who lost heat the day before because of an equipment problem, said she was sorely hoping to get it back and then, she saw a tweet saying the gas line was hit.

"Explosion yeah that's the only thing you think of," Linier said.

Nothing did explode and no evacuations were needed, according to police. The impact was significant for those living off Merline Road, especially seniors at the Lantern Lane Condominiums.

Eversource remained on the scene Friday afternoon along with both the police and fire departments.

Refresh this page and watch Eyewitness News for updates.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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