Interstate 4 re-opens in Seminole County after gas leak prompts hours-long shutdown

Gas leak occurred at I-4 Ultimate construction zone


SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla.UPDATE: About three hours after a gas leak in a construction zone prompted a shutdown of Interstate 4 in Seminole County, the highway has once again opened in both directions. Read the original story below:

A gas leak has prompted a shutdown of Interstate 4 near State Road 436 on Monday afternoon, according to Seminole County officials.

The shutdown was reported shortly before 4 p.m. Motorists are advised to use alternate routes.

[INTERACTIVE MAP: Check conditions for your commute]

Officials from the Florida Department of Transportation said the gas leak occurred in an I-4 Ultimate construction zone in the area. 

Sky 6 video from the scene showed traffic backed up on I-4 eastbound and westbound. Firetrucks and other emergency vehicles were seen near construction in the area.

Motorists on I-4 westbound are encouraged to use State Road 434 as a detour and motorists on eastbound I-4 should use Maitland Boulevard. Even still, motorists should consider exiting the interstate before those detours.

FDOT officials announced at about 6:45 p.m. that tolls would be suspended on the Seminole County section of State Road 417 to encourage drivers to stay off I-4. That portion of the expressway extends from I-4 to Aloma Avenue at the Orange County line. Tolls were reinstated at 8 p.m.

"The suspension of tolls affects the main toll plaza at Lake Jesup, as well as the entrance and exit ramps along S.R. 417 in Seminole County. FDOT is doing this for safety and congestion management, as many roads near the area have been impacted due to the I-4 closure," officials said in a news release.

Crews from TECO, the natural gas provider, are working to stop the gas leak. Officials from TECO said shortly before 7 p.m. that the gas line had been made safe. The Altamonte Police Department said shortly thereafter that officers were preparing to open the interstate in both directions.

The Florida Highway Patrol said at 7 p.m. that I-4 had re-opened.

Check back for more updates on this developing story.

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