Close Call for Thomasville Man After Gas Fills Downtown Business

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Brandon Hagan says he stayed up late Sunday night working at his downtown computer repair shop. Tired, he and a friend decided to sleep there for the night.

Brandon says, "Next thing I know I'm waking up to four yellow 'Darth Vaders.'"

Those “Darth Vaders,” as Hagan recalls them, were actually Thomasville firefighters rescuing him and his friend. The repair shop had filled with natural gas over night. Neighbors smelled it and called 9-1-1.

Jeremy Wilson, co-owner of Computer Exchange, says, "Just grateful to be here and to have everyone in one piece, that's all it comes down to."

Thomasville firefighters say a wall heater was the source of the leak. They say it malfunctioned, releasing large amounts of natural gas.

CAPT Tim Connell with the Thomasville Fire Department says, "People need to have them checked every year. It can become more a problem now without being checked every year."

Gas levels outside the computer shop were high enough during the incident for firefighters to shut down local traffic for much of the morning.

Hagan adds, "When I went back into the building I could smell it, but until then I hadn't even noticed."

Amazingly, Hagan and his friend were treated and released at the scene, and now have quite a story to tell.