Metro Atlanta Gas Leaks Linked to Splurge in Construction - CBS46 News

Metro Atlanta Gas Leaks Linked to Splurge in Construction

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CBS 46 is looking into the increase of cut gas lines in metro Atlanta. In the past week alone there have been at least three gas leaks. 

The latest incident happened on Sydney Marcus Blvd. Construction crews hit the wrong line while digging. The busy street was shut down for hours.

 "It was like around 11 o' clock and there was a strong odor of gas. It filled up the whole block," Quantae Choetas a stylist at a nearby barber shop said. "I was like I hope I don't blow up."

Fire crews quickly responded.

"They had like this gas tester and they came through the barber shop and let us know it was safe to be in there," Choetas said.

The Georgia Public Service Commission is in charge of investigating when gas lines are cut. Bill Edge, a spokesperson for the commission say they get about 4,000 incidents reported to them each year. Under state law the commission can fine contractors up to $10,000 for each violation.

People have to follow several rules when digging. The most important thing to do is to call 811 three days before you dig.

"Usually on a first or second time violation we'll have them go to training and waive the fine," Edge said.

Atlanta Gas Light responds to the leaks. They say the spike in gas leaks have to do with Atlanta's constant construction.

"Atlanta Gas Light has seen an increase in damage to its natural gas lines due to the surge in construction projects throughout Atlanta. Atlanta Gas Light works with contractors and residents to inform them about Georgia’s Dig Law to minimize damage to underground facilities, including natural gas lines.  The Dig Law requires contractors and residents to call Georgia 811 before starting projects that require digging," Kristie Benson, a spokesperson for the company said.

Construction workers at Wednesday's leak told CBS46 a Google Fiber contractor hit the gas line. Investigators have not yet determined who caused the incident.