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Sinkhole, gas leak force evacuations in Pennsylvania city

BETHLEHEM, Pa. – A sinkhole has collapsed part of Pennsylvania street and a gas leak believed to be caused by a ruptured main forced the evacuation of several homes.

The Bethlehem Fire department says about 30 residents had to leave their homes early Wednesday. A four-block area is closed to traffic.

Bethlehem is located about 70 miles north of Philadelphia.

Fire Chief Robert Novatnack said the fire brigade were called to the scene around 3:20 a.m., and detected a strong odor of natural gas, including the inside of some houses. The gas was shut down after a number of hours and the utility crews were making repairs.

Several residents have been evacuated shelter in a nearby school.

A ugi utilities worker was injured when he fell into the hole. He drove himself to the hospital as a precaution.

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Information from: The (Easton, Pa.) Express-Times, http://www.lehighvalleylive.com

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