"Some residents of Lawrence, Andover and North Andover who have had their gas shut off since the Sept. 13 fires and explosions can now expect to go into December without heat and hot water", according to an article by the State House News Service and carried by northandoverwickedlocal.com.
"Officials on Friday announced they were pushing back the original Nov. 19 service restoration date, citing obstacles encountered in the “house-ready” phase of their efforts, despite pipeline construction running ahead of schedule."
"Joe Albanese, who is leading the recovery efforts, said crews have replaced 42 of the 45 miles of pipeline, with plans to have the rest done by Wednesday. Assessing homes for damaged appliances and replacing those appliances to bring gas service back, however, has been “lagging behind schedule”", reports the News Service.
"Now eyeing restoration dates between Dec. 2 and Dec. 16, teams are “re-calibrating the house-ready process” and “adding significant manpower,” he said. “We are racing against the winter,” Albanese said."
"Lawrence Mayor Daniel Rivera, reading a statement from himself and the town managers of Andover and North Andover, said the three leaders had “assumed for some time” that meeting the Nov. 19 date would not be possible, and that the new plan “raises new questions.”"
"A total of 1,040 residential and business gas meters have been relit, and 4,249 of the target 6,100 service lines are now gas-ready, according to Columbia Gas. Pablo Vegas, the utility’s chief restoration officer, said Columbia Gas and its parent company NiSource recognize that customers “are suffering.” He said Columbia will mail a weekly update to all affected residents and will contact those who will not have gas service back by Nov. 19 to offer “resources to help them in whatever they need.”, says the article by the State House News Service.
"Attorney General Maura Healey called the new schedule “simply unacceptable” and said Columbia should provide temporary or permanent heat or “appropriate temporary housing” to all affected residents by Nov. 19, regardless of cost."
To read the original State House News Service Story, go to: http://northandover.wickedlocal.com/news/20181031/gas-restoration-to-extend-into-december