Gas service mostly restored after September explosions

A bicyclist takes a turn at a road block as utility contractors dig up the road above natural gas lines along Brookfield Street in Lawrence.
A bicyclist takes a turn at a road block as utility contractors dig up the road above natural gas lines along Brookfield Street in Lawrence. –Charles Krupa / AP, File

LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — The utility company that caused the September natural gas pipeline explosions in Massachusetts says work to fully restore gas service is mostly complete.

Columbia Gas said Friday that 96 percent of affected customers in Lawrence, North Andover and Andover have had service restored.

The company says most of the homes and businesses still needing service restored are ones that chose to complete the work themselves rather than use the company’s contractors.

Columbia Gas says it’s been renewing efforts to help these customers. It also says some 900 people remain in temporary housing.

The Sept. 13 explosions and fires in the Merrimack Valley killed one teen, injured about two dozen others, damaged more than 100 structures and left thousands without heat or hot water for weeks.

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