FCHS evacuated without incident after crews strike gas line



A Sept. 13 gas leak at Fayette County High School in Fayetteville had students evacuated while crews worked to repair the leak near the new auditorium. Photo/Ben Nelms.

A gas line struck by crews on Sept. 13 working near the new auditorium at Fayette County High School in Fayetteville led to the quick evacuation of students to nearby locations while Atlanta Gas Light crews worked to shut down the line along Tiger Trail.

On scene at the high school, Fayette County School System Facilities Director Mike Satterfield said crews working to install a drain adjacent to the new auditorium still under construction struck a 4-inch gas line near noon.

The odor of natural gas was present inside and outside the new auditorium, situated immediately to the south of the school, and to a lesser extent in one of the classroom buildings.

Students and much of the staff were quickly evacuated, without incident, to the nearby Lafayette Education Center on Lafayette Avenue and to the nearby Center of Innovation on Hood Avenue, school system officials said.

Tiger Trail, along which the school is situated, was closed-off by Fayetteville officers who were joined by city fire units and public works staff.

School system spokesperson Melinda Berry-Dreisbach said lunch was being served to students, adding that water was available at the evacuation sites.

School buses also picked up students at the two evacuation sites at the regular time, Berry-Dreisbach said.