Firefighters evacuated multiple buildings in southeast Portland Tuesday after they say a construction crew hit a gas main in the area.

According to Portland Fire and Rescue, the crew hit the four-inch gas main near the intersection of Southeast 102nd and Foster Road.

Foster Road was closed for several hours and firefighters as crews from Portland General Electric and Northwest Natural responded.

Northwest Natural dug into the exposed sections of the gas line and stopped the leak around 8:15 p.m., Portland Fire and Rescue said.

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Portland General Electric temporarily shut down a power substation adjacent to the gas leak. The fire department said PGE shut the power off in order to "to prevent any potential ignition sources" as the leak continued.

At one point, according to PGE, at least 36,000 customers were without power in Multnomah County.

Fire officials called the leak “significant” and, if necessary, said they were prepared to increase the evacuation distance along Foster Road from 101st to 104th.

After the leak was stopped, the department advised residents in the area to stay away while the gas dissipated and power was restored. Firefighters said Foster Road would remain partially closed through Tuesday night as repairs continued.

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