Students evacuate PC High School following gas leak
Park City High School students were evacuated from their classrooms and dismissed early on Tuesday after Park City Fire District responded to a gas leak outside the school building at 12:40 p.m.
According to Park City Fire District Captain Eric Hales, the leak was caused when construction crews working on a massive high school remodeling project severed a three-inch gas line near the west wing of the high school.
"We’re trying to shut the off the gas and make sure we have no gas in the building to prevent a fire hazard," he told The Park Record Tuesday afternoon.
Park City Fire District engines lined both sides of the building to help direct students. Ambulances and the Wasatch Back Hazardous Materials Response Team also arrived. Firemen suited up to enter the building to monitor fumes inside the building.
The sound and smell of gas permeated the air beyond Lucky John Drive and throughout the surrounding neighborhood, but Park City Fire Marshall Ron Ivie said the most dangerous threat to safety was the gas collected by the building’s vents.
"Gas can be seriously dangerous when you have air intakes in big vents that’s my main concern," he said. "There’s no way to know how much gas has gotten inside, so in the interest of safety, we decided to evacuate the building."
Construction crews continued to clear the grounds after the leak to make way for Questar Gas repairmen to clamp the gas line.
Students appeared calm as they exited, though some expressed some concern over the continuing construction on the school.
"I’m not happy about the whole thing," high school student Lauren Evans said, referring to the reconstruction in general. "My dad’s actually thinking about putting me in private school during the reconstruction."
Park City Fire District spokeswoman Tricia Hurd said that firemen monitoring gas throughout the school after the evacuation found the school to be safe.
"[Firefighters] never got readings of gas within the school, so they determined that there was never any eminent threat [to students or teachers]," she said.
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