The intersection at Haight and Masonic is blocked off and evacuations are taking place after construction crews working on the infrastructure overhaul that commenced this week ruptured a gas line. Stores have been evacuated on Haight from Masonic to Ashbury, and Masonic is closed to traffic from Waller to Page.
The leak was detectable even to people walking by a block away. One passerby on the 1600 block of Haight said it smelled horrible, even while firemen roped off the block with caution tape and trucks.
Pedestrians and cars were all being diverted away from the area, and the sidewalk was crowded with shop employees who had been told to evacuate and shut their doors until further notice.
SFFD has started to evacuate businesses in the area. PG&E has a 15 minute ETA. Avoid the area.— Scanner Says… (@ScannerSays) April 29, 2015
Asked how long the closure could be expected to last, a contractor on site said, "I don't know, it could be all day, for safety. PG&E is on the way."
At the time of this posting, traffic on the street is still being diverted and police and fire crews are responding to the area.
[Update, 4pm: The gas is off and repairs under way, according to reader Alisa Scerrato... except, in comments below @rainbucket tells us that in an unrelated incident, cops entered the area because they were following a murder suspect who ditched a gun nearby. Busy day.
I just got word that 10 regular and undercover police cars just descended onto Haight & Central because the murder suspects they were following ditched the gun in a trash can. On top of this ruptured gas business.
We'll keep you updated with anything more from either situation.]
Thanks to tipsters Wilson and Dave.