Families evacuated after gas probe in Sunderland set to return home

Cordons were put in place on Plumtree Avenue in Sunderland on Wednesday.
Cordons were put in place on Plumtree Avenue in Sunderland on Wednesday.

Residents evacuated from their homes following an incident which saw a woman taken to hospital with burns are set to return home today.

Engineers from Northern Gas Networks (NGN) were called to Plumtree Avenue, in the Red House area of the city, shortly before 5am on Tuesday.

Gas engineers on Plumtree Avenue.

Gas engineers on Plumtree Avenue.

A woman was said to have been taken to hospital after suffering burns and the engineers launched an investigation into the cause of the fire.

Northern Gas Networks evacuated 18 neighbouring properties as a safety precaution and residents were provided with alternative temporary accommodation while the repair work was carried out.

Bosses say engineers have worked tirelessly for more than two days to repair a fractured gas main in the nearby Washington Road and it is hoped that they will be able to return to their homes later today.

Fergal O’Donovan, business operational leader, Northern Gas Networks, said: “The safety of members of the public is our top priority.

The scene on Plumtree Avenue on Wednesday.

The scene on Plumtree Avenue on Wednesday.

"We are very grateful for the cooperation we’ve had from all of our customers affected by this incident and we hope to allow them to return home later today.”

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999.

This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.