Crews Monday capped a well leaking methane gas in California’s South Bay that forced dozens of residents out of their homes.
Golden State Water workers were capping the well, located on Imperial Highway in Hawthorne, CA, last Thursday when they suddenly experienced an unexpected outflow of water mixed with the gas, the company said.
Nearly 40 families in the area surrounding the well evacuated and put up at local hotels due to the gas’ high flammability.
The Glenn Anderson (105) Freeway between Crenshaw Boulevard and the San Diego (405) Freeway as well as the transition roads from the 405 to the eastbound 105 shut down for a short time, according to the California Highway Patrol. All roads reopened by 11:20 a.m.
Fire officials said the colorless and odorless gas also has the potential so ignite flash fires.
The water stopped spouting around 11 a.m. after crews pumped mud into the well. They will eventually cover it with concrete.