The knock on the door was urgent. I opened it to find a firefighter who said there was a gas leak and they were asking all the neighborhood to evacuate while they detected it and fixed it. He asked me to go to the community center. I immediately asked him if I had time to get my wallet and my phone and he said that was fine but I had to hurry. Coming out of the house I smelled gas and I knew the source of my misery. The whole day workers from a telecom company were laying cables. The previous week I had seen other utility personnel marking underground cables and knew some kind of maintenance was on the way.
Montgomery County Fire Department thinks of everyhting
The timing was bad , this was the time when the school buses make their way into the neighborhood and I wondered about kids who would be home alone till their parents came back.
News Crews arrive
I need not have worried. The fire department was on the case. A fantastic team took charge of the kids who did not have their parents and kept them occupied in the community center. Senior students helped little kids with their homework. The principal of the school came to make sure that all the kids were safe and accounted for. Surprise Surprise ! The Gaithersburg Fire Department sent a snack van and the kids got to drink water and have some snacks. The Montgomery County Police Department stood by to help with the kids. It took roughly about 2 hours for the gas leak to plugged and the cleaning up process to be finished. I see cables still lying around so the telecom company crew will be back. Human error happens yet I wish this had never happened and I had my 2 hours back. Atleast i got to meet some cool firefighters and spent some time with the neighbors.
See pictures here http://www.flickr.com/photos/drbeachvacation/sets/72157622246317783/ Any experiences you want to share ?