DETROIT – The City of Detroit, the Great Lakes Water Authority and DTE Energy are investigating an incident that occurred in southwest Detroit late Saturday night.
Read: Cause of “strong odor” reported in southwest Detroit under investigation
A strong odor was investigated Sunday after an apparent underground explosion. The ground has shifted and cracked in Fort and Dearborn Streets near Woodmere Cemetery.
The Detroit Department of Public Works has closed portions of several streets in the area until further notice. City officials said the incident was caused by “underground problems”.
The Department of Public Works is working with the DTE and the Great Lakes Water Authority to determine the cause of the terrain change. Teams from the Detroit Fire Department, Department of Homeland Security, Emergency Management and other local and federal agencies are participating in the investigation.
Residents are asked to be careful and report any strong odors.
DTE Energy said natural gas is not to blame and there is no evidence of a natural gas explosion.
The apparent subterranean eruption occurred on Saturday evening. The incident left a nearby dispensary with extensive structural damage. Those inside the store at the time had no idea what was going on.
“The team was inside and basically we noticed the building was starting to move,” said Ashley Babcock of the Stash Detroit Medical Marijuana Dispensary. “It was time to evacuate the building, so the staff were evacuated.”
Even though the culmination of their hard work has literally collapsed, management plans to move forward while the investigation continues.
“The building is not in good repair so that’s definitely a concern for us,” Babcock said. “We’re not going to let him destroy us. We are not going to let ourselves down. We’re just going to keep taking action, moving forward, and putting everything back together. “
The Detroit Fire Marshal has identified an emergency contractor to demolish a building in the area that was heavily damaged.
Anyone who smells gas or a strong odor in the area is asked to call EGLE’s Pollution Emergency Alert System hotline at 800-292-4706.
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