The city said construction crews punctured a natural gas main pipe in Burnside in Dartmouth, resulting in the evacuation that lasted for several hours. Traffic had to be rerouted and Nova Scotia Power shut off electricity to a large section of the business park.
Early readings of natural gas taken in the area showed high explosive levels, particularly around storm sewer openings, before the broken gas line was pinched at both ends, the city said.
Brendan Elliott, a spokesman for the city, said a company hired by the municipality for a sidewalk project punctured the line while excavating. He would not disclose the name of the company involved.
Nobody was injured.