Chemainus Road construction work in front of McBride’s Service Station. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Gas leak occurs in the construction zone on Chemainus Road Saturday

FortisBC makes repairs while traffic rerouted through River Road

Saturday morning confusion resulted when a gas line ruptured in the construction zone along Chemainus Road.

Chemainus Fire Department crews arrived on the scene and FortisBC crews were notified of third-party damage to the natural gas infrastructure in Chemainus shortly after 8 a.m.

“Our crews arrived on site at Chemainus and River Roads within the hour to inspect the damage and begin repairs,” noted Jessica Skjeveland, FortisBC’s Corporate Communications Advisor, Major Projects.

“Two customers experienced a loss of service as a result of the damage.”

The gas line, she added, was repaired and gas service restored by 11:20 am.

The scene caused some issues with traffic through the construction zone and the area where the gas line leak occurred.

Chemainus Road was blocked between Henry and River Roads, with traffic rerouted to River Road in order to access Chemainus and exit Chemainus.

People going through Chemainus southbound had to go up River Road and return to Chemainus via Henry Road. Unfortunately, that created a dangerous situation with a large volume of drivers trying to make left-hand turns off River Road and onto the Trans-Canada Highway.

“We appreciate the patience of local residents as our crews worked to repair the damage,” Skjeveland indicated.

She stressed to the public that the majority of damages to the FortisBC system are preventable and people are urged to always contact BC 1 Call before digging to obtain information on the location of buried natural gas lines and other utilities.

”Approximately 90 per cent of damages to our natural gas lines can be prevented by following safe excavation practices,” Skjeveland noted.

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