Major gas leak in Hagerstown forces nearly 1,000 people to evacuate

Nearly 1,000 Hagerstown residents evacuated their homes Tuesday afternoon due to a gas leak, and officials say the area could be affected for hours. 

Emergency services personnel are working closely with Washington County Public Schools (WCPS) to oversee safe drop-offs for students from Bester Elementary, E. Russell Hicks, and South

Hagerstown High School. Students from Bester are staying at Hager Park with WCPS officials awaiting pick-up.

According to the City of Hagerstown, a 6-inch gas line was struck by workers earlier in the day in the area of South Potomac Street and West Memorial Boulevard. 

Columbia Gas has people at the scene actively working to control the leak, while the city says crews continue to monitor the area of the leak for a flammable atmosphere. 

The perimeter, officials noted, was determined by utilizing hazardous materials mapping software and current weather conditions. 

This is a developing story. Check back with FOX 5 for updates.