Northbound traffic on Highway 99 is being stopped at Avenue 9 while southbound traffic is being halted at Almond Ave., the California Highway Patrol reported. Detours are in effect.
Residents and other people in the surrounding area have been evacuated for a half mile around Road 29 and Avenue 12 due to the threat of a possible explosion, officials said.
Eight businesses, 15 homes and a migrant daycare center were affected by the evacuation order. Evacuees were taken to the Pan-America Community Center in Madera.
The leak is reportedly located in the Cottonwood Creek area and began when a piece of heavy machinery ran into 12 inch PG&E line around 10 a.m., investigators said.
An Action News reporter in the area told Action News Midday that the leak sounded like a jet engine due to the amount of gas escaping from the ruptured line.
Stay with Action News and ABC30.com for the latest on this Breaking News.