Car crashes over embankment, causes gas leak

By Kyle Perrotti | Mar 08, 2017
Photo by: Kyle Perrotti Waynesville Fire Department responded rapidly to evacuate the area and plug the leak.

A man driving a Ford Mustang crashed over an embankment Wednesday afternoon, breaking a gas line in the process.

The driver, who was not named, drove his car over the embankment near the intersection of East and Welch Streets at a slow speed and ran into an above-ground gas pipe.

Waynesville Police Sergeant Brandon Gilmore said it is not believed that the man was intoxicated, but that they are still finding out all the facts.

"Where the investigation goes from here, I don't know," he said.

Waynesville Fire Department responded to the scene quickly, evacuated the area and plugged the leak with a wooden wedge. Because the line led to a relief valve for an underground tank, there was no isolation valve downstream.

"We've got it contained for the time being," Fire Chief Joey Webb said.

Because of the leak, Junaluska Elementary School, Waynesville Middle School and Tuscola High School are going to alter some afternoon bus routes due to the accident and potential propane leak, according to a press release sent out by Associate Superintendent Bill Nolte.

"Schools are in the process of attempting to contact the parents of students who usually ride the bus and live in the affected area," the release said. "If you have children who live in the Welch Street area of Waynesville who typically ride the bus home, feel free to contact your child’s school and provide guidance on your child’s dismissal for this afternoon."