Gas leak causes evacuations near Lake Merritt

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A contractor struck and ruptured a 3-inch steel gas line in Oakland this afternoon, prompting the evacuation of buildings just east of Lake Merritt, a PG&E spokesman said.

The leak was reported sometime around 1 p.m. near 90 Athol Ave.

PG&E spokesman Brian Swanson said it appears the leak was caused by a contractor installing cable in the area.

Swanson said shortly before 3:30 p.m. that PG&E crews were at the scene and hope to cap the leak by 4:30 p.m. so residents can return home.

No injuries have been reported.

Police closed East 18th Street between Lake Merritt and Third Avenue, Swanson said.

He said PG&E crews will stay at the scene into the evening to repair the line. No customers have lost gas service due to the leak, he said.

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