OCEAN CITY – Two ocean-side blocks were evacuated briefly this week when a city road crew accidentally ruptured a major gas main on 36th Street during a routine paving project.
Around 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Ocean City Public Works crews working on a repaving project in the ocean block area of 36th Street and 37th Street inadvertently struck and ruptured a natural gas main under the surface of roadway on 36th Street. The OCPD and Ocean City Fire Department responded and evacuated roughly 100 people in a two-block area on the ocean side of Coastal Highway from 35th Street to 37th Street.
Eastern Shore Gas crews responded to the potential emergency and were able to shut off the gas to the line and repair the ruptured pipe in a little under half an hour. Once the gas leak was contained and the line was repaired, the evacuated were allowed to return to the area.
No injuries were reported although workers and other witnesses in the area reported the strong odor of gas in the area before the line was repaired. By mid-day, the repaving project was resumed.