Kelly Law Office Temporarily (we hope) Evacuated

A few minutes ago I heard my landlord and office mate, attorney Sid Brennan, yell to his secretary “Call 911!” When one hears that of course it tends to get one’s attention. I came out of my office and found everyone in the reception area looking out the front window at an accident scene which was right next door to our building.

A couple of young women in a small economy car had managed to run off Ford Road right square into a tree; but on their way to the tree they seriously clipped a large natural gas pipe which rises out of the ground nearby. Even inside our building we could hear a loud hiss of natural gas, and in moments we were starting to smell it too.

Oddly enough Mr. Brennan was just starting a meeting with a client who had last been to our office on September 11, 2001. This particular client on that day had come in to meet with Sid saying that he had just heard something on the news and we had better turn on our TV. So today the same guy comes along and while he’s there, this happens. What are the odds of that?

About ten minutes went by with no apparent response to the 911 call. The occupants of the vehicle headed across the street toward the General Mills Credit Union, and one of them fell in the snow on the boulevard. To their credit, the fallen woman was quickly attended to by either customers or staff of the Credit Union. I observed one of them run out to her car and get a blanket. Finally we heard sirens. One squad car, then two, then a number of fire trucks which I never did count showed up. By then I was on the phone to Center Point Energy telling them about the gas leak. My call seemed to be the first they heard of it. The person from Center Point suggested that we leave the building, which I have to admit seemed like a good idea at that time.

Leaving wasn’t that easy, since by then the police and the fire department had the street blocked off. I turned off my computer and most of the lights in the building, forwarded my calls to my cell phone, packed up my laptop (which I am using now), and got out of there. In retrospect I do wish I had at least grabbed my portable hard drive where I back up most of my work.

While I was leaving a brave gentleman in a fire department uniform was heading toward our building on foot with some sort of device in his hand. I imagine that item was a gizmo for measuring the presence of natural gas. I certainly wish to say thank you to all those responders from the Minnetonka and/or St. Louis Park Police Department and Minnetonka and/or St. Louis Park Fire Department. Our building practically sits on the border between the two cities, and I will admit that in my haste to get out of there I didn’t bother to read what it said on the sides of the emergency vehicles.

In a few minutes I have a lunch appointment. After that I’ll try driving back to the office and see if I can get near the place. My next appointment is at 4:30 pm. I hope the crisis is over by then.

When people I know first learn that I have a blog they often ask what in the world a boring guy like me would ever have to blog about. I must say that there always seems to be something – such as the events of today.


  1. Dave Kelly says:

    I just want everyone to know that later that day the gas company finished repairing the leak, and we were all able to get back into the office.

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