A FIRE crew is at the scene of a gas leak in Kilminchy, following the accidental rupturing of a gas mains.
Emergency services were called to the area at lunchtime and a number of houses were evacuated, as a crew from Portlaoise Fire Station dealt with the leak.
People are asked to avoid the area until after 3pm today, when work to seal the mains is expected to be completed.
A unit from the Laois County Fire and Rescue Service rushed to a housing development in Kilminchy, after the alarm was raised at lunchtime. Residents heard a loud hissing sound and there was a strong smell of gas in the area.
It is believed that the gas mains was inadvertently ruptured during work on an adjacent building site.
Emergency services sealed off the area and a technician from Heat Services Ltd is currently working to clamp the mains. It is expected that the work will be completed and the area will be declared safe by about 3pm this afternoon. People are asked to avoid the area if possible until then.