Terrified family fear gas leak could happen again

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A DISTRAUGHT dad whose family were evacuated when a gas leak was discovered in a garden near their home fears the same thing could happen again.

Brian Callaghan, who lives in Alloway Gardens, in Kirkintilloch, discovered the leak on Sunday, January 8.

He initially thought a hedge had been set on fire, before realising the flames were coming from underneath the ground. Later it was discovered the source was a ruptured gas pipe.

Workmen from Scotland Gas Networks and Scottish Power raced to the scene to repair the problem and 15 houses in the area were evacuated.

But Mr Callaghan believes that the underlying cause, initially thought by fire officers to be a faulty electical wire which melted the gas pipe, has not been dealt with.

This week, as an investigation into the cause of the leak continued, he said: “The workmen ran in new electricity cables, I watched them do it.

“One goes under the gas pipe and one goes over the top of it. There’s no gap between them.That can’t be safe and I’m worried that it’s just going to happen again.”

Mr Callaghan also claims that East Dunbartonshire Council failed to keep him informed of when his family could move back into their home - leaving them to stay at his parents’ house.

He said: “I feel the whole situation was handled badly by the council. They said they weren’t obliged to do more than they did, but you would have thought they could have gone that extra wee mile to get people back into their homes.”

A spokesperson for ScottishPower said: “We were contacted because there was a gas leak and we isolated the electricity supply to make sure the leak could be mended safely.

“During the work one of our cables was damaged and we repaired it.

“This is standard procedure and there should be no further safety concerns.”

A spokesperson for Scotland Gas Networks said: “We are currently continuing investigations into this incident and are in dialogue with ScottishPower.”

Alistair Crighton, the council’s head of legal services, said: “The council’s role in the incident was to assist the utility company and the emergency services.

“The question of updating residents on the situation would lie with the utility company.”