Sinkhole-Gas-Leak

A workers inspects a sinkhole that collapsed part of a street in Bethlehem, Pa., Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2016. The sinkhole and a gas leak believed to be caused by a ruptured main forced the evacuation of several homes. (Sue Beyer/The Express-Times via AP)

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

The Bethlehem Fire Department said about 30 residents had to leave their homes early Wednesday.

A four-block area was closed to traffic.

Bethlehem is about 70 miles north of Philadelphia.

Fire Chief Robert Novatnack said firefighters were called to the scene around 3:20 a.m. and detected a strong odor of natural gas, including inside some homes.

The gas was shut off after several hours and utility crews were making repairs.

Several evacuated residents were sheltering at a nearby school.

A UGI utility company worker was injured when he fell into the hole.

He drove himself to the hospital as a precaution.

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