A potentially explosive situation in southeast Winnipeg Wednesday evening forced the evacuation of 30 homes.

Manitoba Hydro says a contractor was drilling holes for a deck on Royal Mint Drive and had not obtained clearance. The Bobcat hit a gas line.

The fire department assessed the situation as explosive and found elevated gas levels in the basement of a neighbouring home.

Police and fire crews at the scene evacuated 30 homes and a few neighbours opted to wait on a Winnipeg Transit bus stationed at the scene.

It took Hydro crews about an hour to shut off the line and several hours to ventilate the area. They also shut off power to the block as a precaution.

A spokesman anticipated residents would be allowed back home around 10 p.m.

Hydro reminds people to call before they dig, as the contractor could be on the hook for expenses related to the gas leak.