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Gas line repaired after rupture forces ‘shelter in place’ at area schools

UPDATE: The El Paso Fire Department said at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday that the gas rupture was contained and residents were clear to return to their houses.


Fire dispatch has confirmed a gas rupture at John Hayes and Charles Foster streets, which is 50 yards from Pebble Hills High School.

Crews were dispatched to the scene Wednesday morning at 9:20 a.m. Six fire units were on the scene.

A school volunteer called ABC-7 and reported there was a strong odor of gas near a construction site.

ABC-7 talked to SISD spokesman Daniel Escobar who said four schools were forced to “shelter in place,” a term used by SISD in the event of an emergency situation.

Students at Pebble Hills High School, Carrasco Elementary, Butler Elementary and Puentes Middle School had to stay indoors.

More than a dozen school buses were dispatched to Pebble Hills as a precaution, according to Escobar.

Escobar said air conditioners were shut off to prevent any gas from getting inside the buildings.

A Texas Gas Service spokeswoman told ABC-7 that construction crews digging in that area hit a gas line and damaged it. They turned the gas off in the damaged portion.

A student at Pebble Hills High told ABC-7 she could taste the gas and felt sick. She was told by school staff to call her parents to pick her up.

SISD announced an early release for Wednesday.

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