Broken gas line temporarily threatens neighborhood
Eureka Springs -- Twenty-year-old Stacy Willson was not having a good Monday. Earlier that morning a Pit Bull running loose had brutally mauled her Pomeranian, which died on the way to the vet; so she was already distracted. Now two cars were blocking her way when she needed to leave her apartment at 30 Nova.
The only way out was the lawn, so she took it. "I couldn't see over the hood onto the ground right in front of me because my Jeep is so high, but I felt a bump and heard some hissing and thought I had gotten a flat tire," Willson said.
Instead, a friend who happened to be standing in the street called to her saying she had run over a gas meter. He quickly called 911 and Stacy "bailed" as the smell of gas became stronger, spreading throughout the neighborhood.
Eureka Springs Fire and Emergency Services immediately dispatched fire trucks and ambulances to the scene as a precaution, while the Eureka Springs Police Department blocked off both ends of the street.
The Jeep was unfortunately wedged hard over a pipe and the gas meter was broken off, lying in the lawn. Still, EMS personnel were able to plug the flow of gas from the line that had been feeding the meter, but further repairs couldn't be made until the vehicle was moved.
A crew from J & J Wrecker Service carefully hoisted the Jeep into the air and swung it out of the way after removing most of the front bumper to free the pipe.
Arkansas Western Gas soon arrived at the scene but the service man said the damage was beyond his ability to repair and may have to involve a construction crew. He said any repairs would be at the expense of "the person driving the car."
EMS and police remained at the scene until it was determined safe.
A tearful Stacy told the Citizen her dog was viciously attacked by a brown brindle Pit Bull in the neighborhood, and she couldn't understand why the dog was loose.
Animal Control Officer Jim Evans investigated the animal attack on Tuesday and said he had written a "Canine at Large" citation for the owner and told him to "get rid of the dog or get it out of the city."
Evans is due at an inquest Friday for another Pit Bull attack case in which a Dachshund was severely wounded. "I need people to step up and testify that the offending dogs are vicious and put some teeth in the law so they can be declared 'visious' and something can be done," Evans said.