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. Tampa lands Super Bowl in 2021


    NFL owners have voted unanimously to move Super Bowl LV to Tampa in Feb. 2021. This will be the fifth time Tampa has hosted and the first time since 2009.

    Mike Tomlin celebrates with LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu after the Steelers beat the Cardinals in 

Super Bowl XLIII  on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. [Times files (2009)
  2. Spacewalking astronauts pull off urgent repairs at International Space Station (w/video)


    CAPE CANAVERAL — Spacewalking astronauts completed urgent repairs at the International Space Station on Tuesday, replacing equipment that failed three days earlier and restoring a backup for a vital data-relay system.

    In this NASA provided frame from video, NASA astronaut Jack Fischer works to install antennas at the International Space Station while astronaut Peggy Whitson, not pictured, works on repairs Tuesday, May 23, 2017. [NASA via AP]
  3. Forecast: Severe storms, gusty winds for Tampa Bay as cold front arrives Wednesday


    Muggy and dry conditions will prevail across the Tampa Bay region ahead of a cold front that could produce gusty winds and potentially severe storms late Wednesday.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  4. For starters: Rays vs. Angels, with Cobb leading the way


    Rays veteran RHP Alex Cobb had a lot to say Monday about the team needing to focus on getting past .500 and building a winning record.

    And after the disappointing 3-2 loss that …

    Alex Cobb will start tonight when the Rays play the Angels.
  5. Tampa murder suspect told police he wanted to stop neo-Nazi roommates from committing acts of domestic terrorism


    TAMPA — After he admitted to shooting two roommates and led police to their dead bodies, Devon Arthurs said he committed the killings to prevent the pair from carrying out terrorist acts, a prosecutor wrote in a court filing.

    Devon Arthurs, 18, told police  he shared neo-Nazi beliefs with his roommates, Jeremy Himmelman and Andrew Oneschuk, until he converted to Islam, according to a police report.
[Tampa Police]