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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary

Release of Natural Gas Harmless, Utility Says

November 15, 2000

SHERMAN OAKS — The smell of natural gas early Tuesday alarmed residents in parts of Sherman Oaks and Van Nuys, but Southern California Gas Co. and fire officials said it was harmless, the result of routine work on nearby gas lines.

The Los Angeles Fire Department received numerous calls regarding the smell starting about 7 a.m., department spokesman Bob Collis said. At 8 a.m., the smell was still strong, causing administrators at Riverside Drive Elementary School in Sherman Oaks to evacuate students from school buildings for about 10 or 15 minutes until fire personnel assured them there was nothing to worry about.

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