• explosions settlement Mar 12, 2020

    Judge Approves $143M Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions Settlement

    A Massachusetts judge approved a $143 million class action settlement Thursday for residents and business owners affected by natural gas explosions in Massachusetts in 2018. The settlement’s approval comes days after Columbia Gas of Massachusetts pleaded guilty to causing the explosions that killed one person, injured dozens of others, and damaged or destroyed more than 100 buildings. “This community suffered…

  • gas explosions Feb 27, 2020

    Hearing Held in $43M Columbia Gas Settlement

    A hearing was held Thursday on the proposed $43 million Merrimack Valley gas settlement and how the money gets divided. The judge at Salem Superior Court did not make a final decision but heard from attorneys and community members impacted by the Sept. 13, 2018 explosions in Andover, North Andover and Lawrence, Massachusetts.

  • COLUMBIA GAS Feb 26, 2020

    Columbia Gas to Pay $53M Fine for Gas Explosions

    Columbia Gas will pay a $53 million criminal fine for breaking a federal pipeline safety law and plead guilty to causing a series of natural gas explosions in Massachusetts that killed one person and damaged dozens of homes, federal officials announced Wednesday.

  • Merrimack Valley Jan 31, 2020

    Last Day to File Claim in 2018 Merrimack Valley Gas Explosion Settlement

    Officials are reminding Merrimack Valley residents that Friday is the deadline to file a claim in the $143 million class action settlement stemming from 2018’s natural gas explosions and fires. Lawyers encourage anyone impacted to file a claim, even if they’ve already filed one through their insurance or Columbia Gas, the utility company blamed for the Sept. 13 disaster. The…

  • Massachusetts Nov 26, 2019

    Fallen Worcester Fire Fighter Awarded Posthumous Medal of Honor

    Fallen Worcester firefighter Christopher Roy, who died battling a fire in 2018, was among those honored Tuesday at Massachusetts’ ‘Firefighter of the Year’ Awards. Officials including Gov. Charlie Baker were on hand for the 30th annual event at Mechanics Hall in Worcester to honor firefighters from fire departments who undertook heroic acts of bravery and public service across the state in 2018.

  • Marc Fortier Oct 25, 2019

    Federal Officials Present Completed Gas Explosion Report

    Massachusetts officials are opening their own investigation into last September’s Merrimack Valley natural gas disaster. More than 100 structures were damaged in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover in the Sept. 13, 2018, fires and explosions. One person died and dozens were injured.

  • Massachusetts Oct 25, 2019

    NTSB Holds Hearing on Gas Explosions

    The NTSB went to Lawrence to discuss what went wrong during the Merrimack Valley gas explosions.

  • Marc Fortier Oct 24, 2019

    NTSB: ‘Weak Engineering Management' by Columbia Gas Led to Merrimack Valley Explosions

    The National Transportation Safety Board has released its final report on last year’s deadly Merrimack Valley gas explosions....
    The 73-page report says the probable cause of the overpressurization that led to the gas explosions on Sept. 13, 2018 was Columbia Gas’ “weak engineering management that did not adequately plan, review, sequence, and oversee the construction project that led to the abandonment...

  • Massachusetts Oct 11, 2019

    $143M Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions Settlement Gets Preliminary Approval

    A judge has given preliminary approval to a $143 million settlement in a lawsuit brought against the utility blamed for a series of gas explosions in Massachusetts in September 2018. Superior Court Judge James Lang wrote in the approval released Friday that the settlement “appears to be fair, reasonable, adequate and sufficient.”

  • Massachusetts Oct 4, 2019

    Mass. Issues Moratorium on Columbia Gas After Lawrence Gas Leak

    Massachusetts officials are taking action against Columbia Gas following last week’s gas leak in Lawrence. The Department of Public Utilities issued a moratorium against the company Thursday, requiring it to get state approval before doing any non-emergency work.

  • Karla Rendon-Alvarez Oct 3, 2019

    Dog Missing for Year After Gas Explosions Reunited With Owner: Report

    It was a tail-wagging and heartfelt reunion Tuesday for a North Andover woman and her beloved pet dog, who reportedly was missing for more than a year following the devastating Merrimack Valley gas explosions. Salem News reports Altagracia Baldera was forced out of her home Sept. 13, 2018 due to the disaster. Seeking shelter, she and her pooch Virgo reportedly...

  • Massachusetts Oct 2, 2019

    Additional Safety Measures Ordered After Lawrence Gas Leak

    Massachusetts officials say the utility company blamed for last year’s destructive gas explosions faces millions of dollars in fines if it fails to complete additional safety measures following a major gas leak that prompted evacuations last week. The state Department of Public Utilities has ordered Columbia Gas to submit by Monday a plan to address 2,220 old service lines abandoned...

  • Massachusetts Sep 30, 2019

    Columbia Gas Opens Claims Center for Residents Impacted by Gas Leak

    Residents and businesses affected by last week’s major gas leak in Lawrence, Massachusetts will be able to file a claim on Monday for any losses. Columbia Gas, the utility company behind last week’s gas leak and last year’s deadly explosions in the Merrimack Valley, said its pop-up claims center would be set up in the parking lot of St. Patrick...

  • Massachusetts Sep 30, 2019

    Claims Center Opens for Lawrence Residents Impacted by Gas Leak

    Residents impacted by last week’s gas leak in Lawrence, Massachusetts, are being assisted by the utility behind the problem.

  • Massachusetts Sep 28, 2019

    Officials: Lawrence Residents Can Return Home

    Officials announced Saturday afternoon that everyone in Lawrence, Massachusetts, can now return to their homes after they were evacuated Friday morning due to a gas leak. About 30 addresses on South Broadway Street will have service restored by 3 p.m. Saturday, and the rest will be restored by 10 p.m., officials said at a press conference. All electric has been restored.

  • Columbia Sep 28, 2019

    Cause of Lawrence Gas Leak Identified After Hundreds Evacuated

    The major gas leak that caused evacuations in Lawrence, Massachusetts, on Friday was started when city contractors checking water valves “inadvertently closed a gas valve” officials said Friday evening. The leak caused hundreds of people to be evacuated from their homes and two schools early in the morning, just over one year after the area was rocked by gas explosions...

  • Massachusetts Sep 28, 2019

    ‘Like Deja Vu': Gas Leak, Evacuations Shake Lawrence Residents

    The gas leak that forced hundreds of people from their homes Friday in Lawrence, Massachusetts, brought back painful memories for a city still scarred by last year’s gas explosions. Brandon Difo returned home to his Lawrence house Friday night. The tired dad is one of hundreds of people evacuated around 4 a.m. after yet another gas main leak.

  • Massachusetts Sep 26, 2019

    $143M Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions Settlement Would Benefit Residents, Business Owners Under New Plan

    Roughly 175,000 residents and business owners would benefit from a $143 million class action settlement from last September’s natural gas explosions in Massachusetts, according to a legal brief. The proposal to distribute proceeds from the settlement against utility company Columbia Gas of Massachusetts calls for six categories of lump sum payouts, ranging from up to $50 for a “nominal” disruption...

  • Massachusetts Sep 24, 2019

    Feds Recommend New Requirements After Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions

    Federal officials are recommending stronger nationwide requirements for natural gas systems following last September’s natural gas explosions and fires in Massachusetts. The National Transportation Safety Board said Tuesday that gas utilities should be required to install gas additional safeguards to pipeline systems similar to the one involved in the Sept. 13, 2018, disaster.

  • Massachusetts Sep 14, 2019

    Merrimack Valley Marks 1 Year Since Disastrous Gas Explosions

    Communities in the Merrimack Valley of Massachusetts on Friday marked the first anniversary of the gas explosions that killed teenager Leonel Rondon, set more than 100 homes on fire and displaced some 8,000 people in Andover, North Andover and Lawrence. A memorial mass was held for the victims and first responders in Lawrence and an area of the city was...

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