Sinkhole in Moraga Causes Gas Rupture, Shelter in Place

A sinkhole in Moraga ruptured a gas line Sunday night, forcing a temporarily shelter in place and the heat to be shut off for a couple thousand residents.

The rupture was reported during heavy rains at Rheem Boulevard and Center Street about 5:30 p.m. Crews worked overnight to cap the line the lift the shelter in place was lifted before 3 a.m. Monday. Still, Rheem Boulevard was expected to be closed for some time as crews worked to repair the sinkhole, which swallowed up a light pole that had fallen into it from the sidewalk.

Because of the "continuing hazard," PG&E spokeswoman Tamar Sarkissian said that the utility shut off the gas, and hot water, to about 2,500 customers on Monday as they work to correct the situation safely.

That means the gas needs to be turned on at each home individually, Sarkissian said. And in some cases, it couldn't be turned on fast enough.

A preschool shut down on Monday because they "had no heat, no electricity," parent Audrey Ng said, who was left to "go home for the day."

There were 100 PG&E representatives to complete the task to turning on all the heat, but homeowners had to be home to get the service restored.

"We'll be working through the night and the day," Sakissian vowed.

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