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Some Mass. Residents Headed Home After Gas Fires, Explosions

Newsy Studio - Sunday, 16 September 2018
One person died and a dozen others were injured in the explosions.
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Some Mass. Residents Headed Home After Gas Fires, Explosions

Some Massachusetts residents  finally headed back home  Sunday after explosions and gas fires forced them to evacuate Thursday evening.

One person died and a dozen others were injured in the events.

Officials suspect  overpressurized gas pipelines  caused the explosions and more than 60 gas fires in three neighborhoods near Boston.

At least 12 families' homes were completely destroyed.

On Friday, Massachusetts Gov.

Charlie Baker issued a state of emergency.

In a press conference he said he was putting Eversource Energy in charge of coordinating the response to the explosions.  Local officials complained  at the time that the company in charge of the affected pipeline, Columbia Gas, wasn't responding.  One  local media outlet reports  Columbia Gas has been the center of prior investigations.

It has reportedly been fined $100,000 over the last seven years for safety violations including improper pressure testing.

The National Transportation Safety Board  will investigate  the explosions and fires.

NTSB's chairman said Saturday that a gas pipeline controller noticed a pressure surge in the area of the Lawrence, Andover and North Andover neighborhoods when the explosions and fires happened.

Additional reporting by  Newsy affiliate CNN .

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