Everyone was finally allowed to go back inside their buildings at the Meadowbrook Apartments after a major gas leak.
Pam Wells' mother was one of more than 40 residents forced to relocate for much of the day. "The police officer said you have to go. Get out. Get out of the apartment complex."
Chesterfield Fire and EMS were on scene just in case if anyone fell ill. "I was only in there 15 minutes, and I was really nauseous," Wells said.
Pam's mother, Ingrid Ellers, said she's just happy this didn't end with someone getting hurt. "Oh yes. I'm so grateful. I mean gas? That whole are could have blown up I guess."
"We're very fortunate nothing like that has happened, and we are pretty close to getting it secure at this point," said Lt. Jason Elmore with Chesterfield Fire and EMS.
Fire crews said there is no longer a hazard to residents and they're turning the situation over to Richmond Gas and apartment management, but they responded with all hands on deck.
"Absolutely anytime there is an active flow of gas especially around residential homes, we take it very seriously," said Lt. Elmore. "That's why we have evacuated the six buildings."
Pam rounded up the family cats before the evacuation. "They would have probably died if she hadn't been there," Ellers said. "She's a lifesaver. She's my hero."
At least 50 apartment units were evacuated, according to Lt. Jason Elmore of the Chesterfield Fire Department.
Crews worked late into the night to try and make the necessary repairs.
Meanwhile, the gas leak left residents without hot water and heat.
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