EDWARDSVILLE - A ruptured gas pipe in a field on the east side of Edwardsville late Monday afternoon forced the temporary closure of a portion of Illinois Route 143.

The Edwardsville Fire Department shut down Route 143 between Staunton Road and Goshen Road (east of Interstate 55) just before 5 p.m. There was no immediate danger to anyone who lives in the area.

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An update was issued later Monday night: "One lane of traffic on Route 143 has reopened, but drivers are asked to please be cautious and heed the guidance of first responders as traffic alternates between the eastbound and westbound directions."

The Edwardsville Fire Department is being assisted in this matter by the Marine Fire Department.

Drivers were asked to avoid the area as the road is likely to remain closed for the next several hours while Ameren works to bypass the broken pipe. Fire Chief James Whiteford said those needing to travel east along the route could drive south on Staunton Road, then east on Goshen Road and follow that back to Route 143. Those traveling west on Route 143 could take Goshen Road to Staunton Road back to Route 143.

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