UPDATE: The ruptured gas line has been shut off and residents and employees can now return to their homes and businesses, according to Conyers Police.
RCFR and Atlanta Gas Light personnel went through the area with gas sensors to determine the air in the atmosphere was safe.
Main Street between Peek and Elm streets will continue to be closed for repair work on the line.
(12:35 p.m.) The evacuation area is being expanded to include residences on Peek Street from Main Street to Institution Street. The expansion is due to the changing winds, said CPD spokesperson Kim Lucas.
A gas line break around 10:45 a.m. on Peek Street and Main Street has evacuated nearby businesses, offices and residences, including the Rockdale government offices.
The gas line break reportedly occured while Rockdale Water Resources subcontractors were working on water lines.
Areas affected include Conyers First United Methodist, Conyers Presbyterian, the Rockdale County government administrative offices (which includes the Rockdale Water Resources customer service department, Zoning and Code, Stormwater and Community Affairs), the law office of Dan Chapman, and nearby residences.
The Rockdale County Administrative building and Board of Commissioners office will be closed for the day and will re-open Friday.
Rockdale County courts and tag office is closed until 2 p.m.
Resident Cindy Hays was wracked with anxiety about her pets trapped inside her home at 914 Main Street, right next to the gas line break. Hays, a 43-year resident of Conyers, had lived through the BioLab fire and other emergencies. During that fire, she was allowed to rescue her animals, she said.
"I can't imagine anything worse," she said, as she worried about the possibility of them suffocating. She was out of the house when the line break occured. When she came back, she was not allowed to go back to her house. She has 13 animals that she's rescued over the years.
Fire and police officials reassured Hays the animals would be safe, especially since the wind has been clearing out a lot of the gas.
It is unknown how long the area will be evacuated.
Atlanta Gas workers were still on their way as of noon.
Employees who had their cars parked in the evacuated areas were not allowed to go back for their vehicles.
Streets to the area have been blocked. Drivers are advised to use alternate routes.