Alexander Luzula | Asst. News Director
A construction crew accidentally ruptured a gas line on Modesto Maidique Campus Friday, April 15, forcing several buildings to be evacuated as a safety precaution.
The crew was undergoing construction on the currently in-development Trish and Dan Bell Chapel, set to open in March of 2024, when they ruptured a gas line at around 10 a.m., causing gas to leak into the air.
Several surrounding buildings, including the Student Academic Success Center, the Academic Health Center One, and the Reagan House were evacuated as a precautionary measure.
Traffic was also suspended in that area for several hours, with Gold and Blue Garages closed for the duration. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue, in addition to FIU Police, the FIU Environmental Health and Safety Team, and Florida City Gas, responded to the scene. Around noon, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue gave the all-clear, allowing university operations to resume.
FIU Police Chief Alexander D. Casas did warn that the smell of the gas would still be lingering in the air, however, it was not a sign of imminent danger.
“The gas has an additive that makes it smell stronger, so people can notice it and act,” said Chief Casas. “But there’s no risk of an explosion.”
The gas company is set to repair the damaged pipe today, April 15. University operations have also resumed as usual.