(Juneau) As of the latest press release from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office, Utility crews are still working to repair a gas leak caused by a vehicle accident from yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon. The incident occurred around 230pm on HWY 26 near the Dodge County Airport outside of Juneau. The crash caused damage to an above ground section of the natural gas service for the area creating what was described to be a significant gas leak. In response authorities evacuated a one-mile radius around the area to ensure the safety of residents. Additionally, natural gas service to the city of Juneau and the surrounding area was shut down while repairs were underway. It was anticipated that the repairs could take upwards of eight hours to complete barring any unforeseen complications, with gas service shut off to about 1,100 homes in the Juneau area. Initially a short term warming shelter was established at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Horicon, later an overnight warming shelter was established to assist residents without heat at the Horicon High School staffed by Sheriff’s Office staff and members of the Red Cross.
Latest reports estimated that crews would be able to begin relighting pilot lights in the Burnett and Minnesota Junction areas by 2am this (Thursday) morning followed by homes in Juneau around 6am. The Sheriff’s update adds that traffic detours around the affected area will remain in place as crews continue to repair and restore gas service. A Unified command has been established on scene with Emergency management, the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office, and Juneau Fire Departments assisting.