Firefighters had to evacuate the Wade Lupe Tower & Garden apartments after a worker punctured an outdoor gas main, Assistant Fire Chief Michael Gillespie said.
The worker was driving stakes into the ground next to a driveway, and hit the plastic, 4-inch man, Gillespie said.
Gas bubbled out of the ground. Firefighters evacuated the tenants as a precaution, but Gillespie said they were never in danger — the gas remained outdoors.
Roughly half an hour later, National Grid arrived and began repairs, he said.
Two non-ambulatory residents of the apartment building were taken out of their units by ambulance crews, and were waiting in Mohawk Ambulances for the all-clear. The other residents were standing in a wooded area near the apartments.
The apartments are on Queens Drive, near the Stadium Golf Club.