UPDATE WEDNESDAY 12:01 A.M.: As of midnight, Avalon Shelton residents have been allowed back inside the apartment complex on Canal Street in downtown Shelton.
“We were just allowed back inside. Oh boy,” an Avalon resident tweeted at about 11:40 p.m.
Multiple Shelton fire, police and ambulance personnel had responded to the scene just before 10 p.m. due to a reported grease fire and suspected natural gas leak.
According to an earlier posting by Echo Hose Fire, emergency crews had to contend with “multiple gas leaks” and “EMS [is] evaluating patients.”
Waiting for the all-clear
Avalon residents were evacuated for more than an hour-and-a-half so firefighters as well as Eversource (Yankee Gas) employees could search for the source of the suspected gas leaks. Gas reading monitors are used to try to find out where any problem is originating from.
For a period, Avalon residents were welcomed inside the lobby of the neighboring Birmingham on the River condo complex to keep warm.
Avalon Shelton is a 250-unit rental residential complex that borders the Housatonic River. It opened in 2013.
Emergency access to Canal Street
All emergency vehicles must access the Avalon Shelton area from the south on Canal Street because Wooster Street, which connects Canal Street to Howe Avenue farther north, is closed at the railroad crossing.
Some emergency officials have expressed concerns about being able to adequately access the end of Canal Street during major incidents, due to the closure of Wooster Street.