Teenager killed as 'gas explosions' set homes ablaze

Leroy Wright
September 15, 2018

"The follow through just was not there", Baker said. "We will get units out there".

All anyone could point to was a notice posted on the gas company's website Thursday morning which said they were going to be doing some work in the neighborhood.

In April, Columbia Gas filed a petition with the state's Department of Public Utilities to increase annual revenues by $24.1 million in part to help the company replace aging infrastructure. "I thought it was a auto accident".

"Mr. Rondon was inside a auto near 35 Chickering Rd in Lawrence when a chimney from a house explosion fell on the vehicle", the district attorney's office said.

"At this time, the focus remains on ensuring the public safety", Mr Baker said. "This will not be an easy process and we ask for continued patience". As long as it takes.

"Far too early to speculate on cause" of the explosions, authorities said.

Massachusetts State Police tweeted: "Power company will be shutting OFF power to all of #Lawrence, #NorthAndover, and #Andover to assist in the gas situation".

"People have a right to know", Markey told reporters.

A 2011 natural gas explosion killed five people in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and that state's largest gas utility was fined by regulators, who called the company's safety record "downright alarming". "We're there to investigate the accident to determine what happened so we can keep it from happening again".

In this image take from video provided by WCVB in Boston, flames consume a home.

Methuen Police Chief Joseph Solomon told The Associated Press that up to 25 homes were on fire in the city of Lawrence alone.

One person was killed when a chimney from an exploding house landed on his vehicle.

Leonel Rondon, 18, died after an explosion caused a chimney to topple onto his auto. Three people rushed out.

Two people, including a firefighter, sustained non-life-threatening injuries, said town spokesman John Guilfoil. "If you haven't evacuated, you gotta go", he said. "I've never seen anything like this".

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Emergency crews are responding to what they believe is a series of gas explosions that have damaged homes across three communities north of Boston.

Some residents in Andover have been told they can return to their homes, city officials said early Friday.

State police put the tally of fires and explosions at 70, up from the 39 initially reported.

A middle school in North Andover and a senior center in Andover were set up for evacuees, according to the agency.

Schools were to be closed Friday in Lawrence and Andover.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is reportedly sending in a team to investigate.

"Our mission is to find out what happened, so that we can learn from it and keep it from happening again", he said.

Neighborhoods were evacuated in northern Massachusetts Thursday following a series of explosions and fires apparently caused by a faulty gas line.

"Replacing leak-prone infrastructure is a leading priority", the utility said in April.

The crisis spanned Lawrence, Andover and North Andover, according to The Eagle-Tribune. Columbia Gas is working to shut off gas service, and we will re-evaluate from there.

Multiple fire trucks from surrounding communities arrive in Lawrence, Massachusetts.

Medeiros said: "The entire town smelled like gas".

By later in the evening, gas meters had been shut off by Columbia Gas at about 8,600 meters, and residents were ordered to evacuate their homes.

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