4TH UPDATE, 5:46 PM: The evacuation order has been lifted. The Gas Company now says crews were able to get to the leak faster than anticipated and that it has been stopped. The street closures should end shortly.
3rd UPDATE, 5:25 PM: A rep for the Southern California Gas Company says it should take 60 to 90 minutes to turn off the the gas because crews need to drill through concrete. Spokeswoman Denise King said a construction worker operating a backhoe damaged a 2-inch gas service line. She said 3rd Street remains closed between Foothill Road and Civic Center Drive but added that “the area is safe”. She did not have an estimate on actual repair time.
2nd UPDATE, 5:15 PM: The Beverly Hills Fire Department says it will take several hours to repair the ruptured gas line and businesses will remain evacuated through the evening.
PREVIOUS: BREAKING: UPDATED: UTA, Participant Media, Playboy, Gibson and other companies’ offices in the area have been evacuated while the Beverly Hills Fire Department investigates a gas leak. A Fire Department spokeswoman confirms a gas line ruptured at about 3 PM today at a construction site at 9357 3rd Street and every building on that block has been evacuated. Gibson tweeted this photo of the evacuation.
Enterprising evacuees have taken the mass exodus as an opportunity to conduct biz, so to speak, at nearby bars. Here’s a tweet amid the crisis from Participant’s Callie Spaide:
When your office has a gas leak, why not grab a cocktail? @ L’Ermitage Beverly Hills Hotel http://t.co/SFegwAi8j0
— Callie (@CallieBSpaide) August 7, 2013