Gas leak closes roads in Bonita Springs on Wednesday evening

Published by on July 13, 2005

Old U.S. 41 and Strike Lane in Bonita Springs were closed for more than two hours Wednesday evening following a gas leak at Bernwood Business Centre.

The leak came from a natural gas main valve near the Blue Moon Cafe on the east side of the plaza, according to authorities.

Bonita Spring Fire Lt. Dan Ryan said it was a hazardous situation, but no one was injured.

“It smelled a lot on the outside, so people figured it was worse inside,” he said. “But it was contained to the outside.”

Just last week, the same plaza was evacuated for several hours because of a gas leak in a stove inside the Blue Moon Cafe.

“It doesn’t appear to have any relation,” Ryan said, referring to the previous leak.

Lyn Bedell, an employee of neighboring tenant Keller Williams Realty, said she and several coworkers noticed the smell while sitting outside the cafe about 4:45 p.m. and called the fire department.

“We were just sitting there, having a meeting and just smelled it,” she said. “We were aware that the (previous) leak had come from the restaurant.”

Members of Bonita Fire’s hazardous materials team, Lee County EMS, Lee County Sheriff’s deputies and TECO gas officials arrived soon after.

They shut off the valve and evacuated neighboring tenants while investigating the interior of the cafe. The building and roads were reopened about 7:30 p.m.

— Staff writer Christina Cepero contributed to this report.

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