Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Admiral Farragut Academy evacuated for gas leak, repairs under way

ST. PETERSBURG — A gas leak near Admiral Farragut Academy on Park Street N prompted the school's evacuation Wednesday afternoon.

Police and firefighters are on scene and portions of Park Street in front of the school are closed, police said.

Construction crews working on a sewer called authorities about 11:20 a.m. to report they had punctured a 6-inch gas line about 20 to 30 feet underground.

Junior Melissa Brizzi said she was copying AP U.S. history notes when she saw a jet of whitish vapor shoot up from the ground.

"It was a lot of gas," Brizzi said.

About 200 students were evacuated from the school and taken to the football field. They were eventually moved inside and many parents arrived to pick up children early.

Brizzi's father, Mike, a plumber, said he wasn't too concerned but still arrived to pick up Melissa and her younger brother several hours early.

"I knew nothing was going to happen," Mike Brizzi said.

Authorities said the breeze was easing concerns about the gas.

"The little bit of wind is dispersing the gas through the area, and it's blowing it away from the school,'' said Lt. Steven Lawrence of St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue.

Repair work on the pipe is still under way.

The school has been closed and parents are being advised that they can pick up their children early.

Admiral Farragut Academy evacuated for gas leak, repairs under way 02/26/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 3:15pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. U.S. teen drug overdose deaths inch up after years of decline


    NEW YORK — After years of decline, teen deaths from drug overdoses have inched up, a new U.S. government report shows.

    OxyContin pills are arranged for a photo at a pharmacy in Montpelier, Vt. A report found drug overdose deaths among U.S. teens inched up in 2015 after years of decline. The report was released on Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [AP (2013)]
  2. UF denies white supremacist Richard Spencer's request to speak on campus


    Citing "serious concerns for campus safety," University of Florida leaders have denied white nationalist Richard Spencer's application to speak on campus next month.

    White nationalist Richard Spencer (C) and his supporters clash with Virginia State Police in Lee Park after the "Unite the Right" rally was declared an unlawful gathering Aug. 12, 2017 in Charlottesville, Va. [Getty Images]
  3. MoviePass now offers unlimited movie watching in theaters for $10 a month, here's what you need to know


    There's now a service that says it will let you watch as many movies as you want for one monthly price: MoviePass. 

    MoviePass will let customers see up to one movie, every day, for $10 a month.
  4. Former Florida prison guards in KKK convicted of plotting to kill a black inmate


    Two former prison guards in Florida who were members of the Ku Klux Klan have been convicted of plotting to kill a black inmate in retaliation for a scuffle with another guard who also belonged to the hate group.

    A jury in Columbia County found David Elliot Moran, left, and Charles Thomas Newcomb guilty of conspiracy to commit first degree murder after they were caught discussing their plans to kill a black inmate in retaliation for a scuffle with another guard who, like them, belonged to the Ku Klux Klan. [Alachua County Jail via AP (2015)]
  5. Jameis Winston's subtle but strong moment of leadership displayed on 'Hard Knocks'


    Quarterback Jameis Winston went to each teammate in the locker room prior to the Bucs' preseason opener Friday at Cincinnati with one message: 'I got your back.'

    Then he proved it.

    Jameis Winston sarcastically tells offensive linemen James Stone and James Harrison he's glad glad they're having fun while quarterback Ryan Griffin is being attended to in the locker room by the Bucs medical staff. [HBO/NFL FILMS]