Gas leak sprung as snow is shoveled off Westport stores' roof
A gas leak was sprung on the roof of a Post Road East strip mall Friday afternoon as workers were shoveling thick snow off the roof of the retail complex.
Workers removing snow from the flat roof at 1543 Post Road East called firefighters to the scene shortly before 3:30 p.m. when they heard a hissing sound and then smelled the odor of gas.
Firefighters ordered evacuation of the stores and asked Southern Connecticut Gas to dispatch an inspector to the scene to help search for the source of the leak. They determined that a gas line servicing an HVAC unit on the roof had rotted away, causing the leak.
Firefighters were hampered trying to shut off the gas meter feeding the line because snow was piled high against the rear of the building. The gas company worker soon found the meter and turned off the gas supply. Firefighters dug out the other three gas meters at the rear of the structure as a precaution.
No injuries were reported and the businesses were allowed to resume operations a short time later.
Fire crews left the scene about an hour after responding to the emergency call.