Outside Natural Gas Leak Forces Evacuation of Shortlidge Elementary School

Posted on  01/30/2014 1:52 pm

TIME: 10:42 AM

This morning at 10:42 a.m., Wilmington firefighters on the D-Platoon were dispatched to the 100 block of West 18th Street for a report of an outside natural gas odor in front of Shortlidge Elementary School. Upon arriving, Fire Department units confirmed the presence of natural gas and began searching for the source of the leak.

Fire Department personnel, utilizing metering devices, conducted a search of the streets and homes in a four block radius of the 100 block of West 18th Street. No gas readings were recorded in Shortlidge Elementary School or inside the area homes. But as a precaution, the Wilmington Fire Department and Shortlidge School Staff evacuated the school children, relocating them to Warner Elementary School (801 West 18th Street) via buses.

Delmarva Gas Division responded and assisted the Wilmington Fire Department in locating the natural gas leak. Delmarva Gas determined that the leak was located under the street in the 100 block of West 18th Street and posed no hazard to the surrounding residents and school.

The situation was placed under control and turned over to Delmarva Gas Division at 11:52 a.m. by the Incident Commander, Battalion Chief Raymond Brock. The 100 Block of West 18th Street remains closed to all traffic while Delmarva Gas makes repairs. School Officials had not returned the children to Shortlidge School upon WFD’s termination of this incident.

Approximately 25 fire and EMS personnel responded to the fire. The following units responded: Engine 4, Engine 5, Squad Engine 1, Ladder 1, Battalion 4, Battalion 8, Deputy 2, F1, F8, FM14, WOEM1, Ambulance PA2, Wilmington PD and Delmarva Gas.