Major gas leak near Highway 65 snarles Blaine afternoon traffic

Fire crews from three Spring Lake Park-Blaine-Mounds View (SBM) stations worked a major natural gas leak at Highway 65 and 105th Avenue in Blaine Friday afternoon.

Connexus Energy crews work on a gas line break on 105th Avenue in Blaine Friday after a utility subcontractor hit an unmarked six-inch steel gas line. Photos by Tim Hennagir

CenterPoint Energy  crews work on a gas line break on 105th Avenue in Blaine Friday after a utility subcontractor hit an unmarked six-inch steel gas line. Photos by Tim Hennagir

Fire Chief Nyle Zikmund said shortly before 11:30 a.m. Friday morning he was en route to the location.

“There’s no traffic on northbound Highway 65, and traffic is being diverted,” Zikmund said. “The call came in as a major gas line break blowing gas into the intersection.”

Garrett Parten, SBM’s chief of operations, said Friday afternoon a company doing fiber-optic boring work in the area hit a 6-inch steel gas line that was not marked.

“There was a 2-inch line that was clearly marked, they avoided that, but the crew that was working indicated the 6-inch line was not marked.”

Blaine police officers direct traffic on Davenport Street around a major gas leak Friday afternoon.

Blaine police officers direct traffic on Davenport Street around a major gas leak Friday afternoon.

Shortly before 1 p.m., Parten said four area businesses had been closed and evacuated and fire crews were doing air monitoring checks at the nearby Comfort Suites.

According to Parten, Highway 65 northbound starting at 93rd Avenue has been closed. Police and fire units are redirecting area traffic on Davenport Street and Baltimore Street.

Tim Hennagir is at tim.hennagir@ecm-inc.com

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