Downtown buildings evacuated Friday after gas leak in Inuvik

Town of Inuvik photo courtesy of MACA

There were some anxious moments in Inuvik Friday morning as a gas leak forced the evacuation of several downtown buildings.

According to a news release from the town, at about 10:30 am, Inuvik Fire, Municipal Enforcement,  RCMP and Inuvik Gas responded to a gas leak at an Office Building-Storefront on MacKenzie Road.

An official says construction operations at the building ruptured a gas line.

As a precautionary measure, all buildings in the immediate area were safely evacuated and the road was closed.

Acting Senior Administrative officer Cynthia Hammond estimated about 100 people were forced outside by the evacuation.

The gas distribution system to the downtown core was shut off, to prevent further release.

All buildings were cleared, monitored for gas levels and made safe by 11:20 and all occupants were allowed to resume operations shortly thereafter.

There are no injuries reported.

As of the noon hour the gas distribution in the downtown core remains disabled until the line can be capped or repaired.

It was anticipated that it would be restored later Friday afternoon.

On behalf of all the Emergency Response Agencies, we would like to applaud and acknowledge the building occupants and general public for their orderly compliance with the evacuation order.

Their cooperation assisted us in focusing on mitigating the incident safely and efficiently.

About the Author

John McFadden
John has been in the broadcast journalism industry since the 1980s. He has been a reporter in Yellowknife since 2012 and joined CKLB in January of 2018. John covers the crime and court beat as well as reporting on other areas including politics, business, entertainment and sports. He won seven national community newspaper awards while he was a journalist with Northern News Services Limited (NNSL). John worked in Ontario before coming North including stints as a TV sportscaster in Peterborough and senior news writer for CBC and CTV in downtown Toronto.