Gas leak near Monticello forces evacuations - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Company repairing leak, people headed home

Posted:
MONTICELLO (KWWL) -

Updated Story, 10:00 a.m. Friday:

People displaced from their homes after an LP gas leak Wednesday are finally headed back nearly two days later.  

"It's nice to be back, but it's colder than heck in there," said Esther LeClere, one of the 14 homeowners displaced for close to 48 hours.

Jones County Sheriff Greg Graver says after a weather delay, repair crews were finally able to shut off a valve at 3:00 a.m. Friday morning.  The company, Kinder Morgan, is assessing the damage and are going to begin repairs. Power crews are restoring power and people are allowed to return to their homes.

Kinder Morgan says leak was initially caused when pipeline equipment was hit and damaged by a farmer this week.

 

Updated Story, 3:30 p.m. Thursday:

The Jones County Sheriff says unseasonable winter weather in May has held up repair crews to fix an LP gas leak south of Monticello.  The crew is coming from Albert Lea, Minnesota, and was held up as snow and slush moved into eastern Iowa.

Sheriff Graver is optimistic repair crews can arrive in the next few hours to begin making repairs.  Occupants from 14 residencies were told to leave their homes when the leak happened Wednesday.  Since that time, the number of homes is down to ten.  Sheriff Graver says the weather system's wind from the northwest is blowing to the southeast, and has dissipated LP gas on the north side of the impacted area.

Of the people affected, many are staying with family and friends.  The company which owns the pipe, Kinder Morgan is paying for others to stay at hotels.

Sheriff Graver hopes everyone will be able to return to their home Thursday night, but also cautioned that repairs could not be made until sometime Friday morning.

 

Original Story, 5:20 p.m. Wednesday:

The Jones County Sheriff's Office says a gas leak near Monticello has forced the evacuation of homes.

The leak is reportedly a miles south of Monticello on County Road X-44. The sheriff's office says homes within a couple mile radius of the area are evacuated and people are not being allowed into the area.

Kinder Morgan, the energy company who manages the pipe, says they have isolated the issue, and at this time there are no fires or injuries reported. 

Officials say there was no construction in the area, but the leak is in a field along a fence line.

No injuries have been reported.

Camp Courageous is 3 or 4 miles away from the leak, but the camp has not evacuated. Officials have told them are currently safe.

Stay with KWWL for details as they become available.

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