Thursday, 4:30 PM
Manholes burst into flame in North End
(John Bohn/Globe Staff)
Police and NStar workers at the scene.
By Globe Staff
Three manholes burst into flame in the North End this afternoon, and the resulting smoke required some people to be evacuated from nearby businesses, but the fire was quickly extinguished, the Boston fire department said.
No one was hurt in the incident, which was reported about 5:30 p.m. on Hanover Street, said fire department spokesman Steve MacDonald.
“We’re pretty much done down there,” MacDonald said an hour after the original call. No injuries were reported.
Massimo Tiberi, managing partner of Tresca, a restaurant near where the manholes caught fire, said there was a "big burst" and a 25-foot flame came out of a manhole in front of his restaurant.
"It was pretty crazy," he said. He said the street remains closed.
"We’re closed for tonight, so I’m a little bit upset," he said.
MacDonald said the fire department had called NStar, which was working on the wiring in the manholes and would probe what went wrong.
Caroline Allen, an NStar spokeswoman, said the explosion resulted from a cable failure, which occurs "from time to time." She said 13 buildings were without power for about three hours as a precautionary measure.