High pressure gas leak in Providence contained, all roads reopened

Traffic blocked off at Eddy and Point Street

By: News Staff


Twitter: @ABC6

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — All roads are back open Thursday morning after a natural gas leak in downtown Providence Wednesday night.

Route I-195 and parts of Allens Avenue shutdown for hours as National Grid crews worked to shut off the leak.

Crews packed up Thursday morning from the scene of the gas leak in Providence, which wrapped up an eight plus hour situation at one of the National Grid substations Wednesday.

I-195 East and West closed from approximately 8:00 p.m. until midnight.

Drivers who made it down the highway before it shutdown in both directions told ABC6 News they could smell and see smoke clouds billowing above.

According to Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare, a leak was discovered on Allens Avenue after a pipe ruptured underground around 8:00 p.m.

Police cleared the area and made sure nothing flammable was nearby.

Officials explained a mechanical failure is to blame for the issue.

“Some mechanical equipment within that gas regulator station, so anytime something like that happens, we isolate valves that feed into that, to shut it down, and then to assess what’s happening out there,” said Pare.

“We deemed it was necessary to shut 195 down because that gas was right under that highway, so we’re going to make sure that people are safe. I know there may be some congestion as a result of it, but its safety first”

Providence Police as well as Rhode Island State Police had blocked I-195 in both directions as well as Allens Ave, parts of Eddy Street, and Point Street to traffic while crews worked to asses the leak.

Due to highly explosive nature of the gas, police advised to avoid the areas at all cost.  National Grid shut off all valves in order to find the leak.

Authorities say the gentlemen’s club Desire was also evacuated.

Prior reports saying an explosion occurred are false and no injuries have been reported.

Again, all roads are back open including I-195 and Allens Avenue.

National Grid reports there will be no disruption in service for their customers.

©WLNE-TV / ABC6 2017