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With all the new construction these days, it was not the first -- nor last -- such gas line incident

DAVID F. ASHTON -  A N.W. Natural Gas worker checks the area where an excavator sliced through a gas line in the Brooklyn neighborhood. Street paving in the Brooklyn neighborhood came to a standstill at 12:28 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26, when work crews broke a natural gas line on S.E. 10th Avenue, just south of Rhone Street. Construction equipment was shut down, and there was eerie silence, save the whistling of escaping gas.

N.W. Natural Gas crews arrived at 12:50 p.m., and assessed the situation.

"The break was caused by a contracting crew operating an excavator," said N.W. Natural spokesperson Daphne Mathew about the incident. "The damage was to one of N.W. Natural's half-inch polyethylene lines; it's about the diameter of a person's thumb."

Gas company workers quickly stemmed the flow and repaired the damaged pipe.

"Anyone who plans to dig 12 inches or lower needs to call '8-1-1' to have underground utilities marked first," Mathew reminded. "And, if you smell natural gas, leave the area immediately – then call us at 800/882-3377, and we will come over and check things out."

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