Gas leak in Grosse Pointe Woods forces home evacuations, closes several roads

Students held at Grosse Pointe North High School

GROSSE POINTE WOODS, Mich. – Police were advising the public Tuesday morning to avoid the area near Grosse Pointe North High School due to a gas leak which caused the evacuation of homes in the area and closed several roads.

A major gas line was struck at Vernier Road, near Morningside Drive. Vernier Road was closed between Lakeshore Road and Wedgewood Drive, but it has since reopened.

"There is enough pressure coming out of that main that it can level a house," Grosse Pointe police Chief John Kosanke said.

Residents in the immediate area were evacuated.

Maggic Lutobarsa's house sat in the cross hairs. She was home at the time and got a disquieting knock on the door from a police officer asking her and her neighbors to leave.

"They just took the key from my house to check (the) gas level in the house, and so I don't know what's going on," Lutobarsa said. "I just went over to a friend's house."

Police went door-to-door twice, closed down the neighborhood roads and locked down Grosse Pointe North High School.

"We're not used to having closed-campus lunch, so a lot of us didn't have food and we didn't bring money for lunch," one student said.

"We just stayed in the lunch room with a lot of people," another student said. "I had to buy something at the cafeteria."

Students at Grosse Pointe North High School will remain in the building until the situation is resolved.

The school sent out the following statement:

"Grosse Pointe Woods Public Safety has closed the North High School campus until further notified, to keep students safe while they address a gas leak on Morningside. Lunch will be closed campus also. All middle school students who take classes at North are safely back in their middle schools. Ferry Elementary, Mason Elementary and Parcells Middle School are not closed and have been cleared for outdoor recess. North staff is working with the students taking Advanced Placement (AP) tests across the street now and this afternoon."

Word of the leak spread quickly.

"I got a text to let me know that they were evacuating the area, so I just came home to get my dog and wake up my husband," Kim Hollowell said.

A natural gas leak recently forced homes and businesses to be evacuated April 27 in Grosse Pointe Woods.

READ: Natural gas leak in Grosse Pointe Woods forces evacuations near Mack Avenue

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