Natural Gas Leak Forces New York Station to Evacuate

By Andrew Gauthier 

Watertown Daily Times

An odor that Monday morning was dismissed as sewer gas grew stronger as the hours wore on, finally prompting the evacuation of the WWNY-TV 7 building and the neighboring Benefit Services Group, both on Arcade Street.

The Watertown Fire Department determined it was natural gas, not sewer gas. Although the vapors had not reached an explosive level when units responded at 1:55 p.m. to their second call of the day, the gas buildup likely would have become dangerous if it had been left unchecked, said Battalion Chief Patrick J. Wiley.

National Grid crews jackhammered a hole in the Stone Street sidewalk, directly next to the Sullivan Building, home of Benefit Services, 142 Arcade St., to repair a separated underground stop valve in the gas line, Chief Wiley said. The work was completed by 6:30 p.m. More…