Update: One person is dead, many are injured, and property damage is immense in a series of explosions and fires in the North Andover, Andover, and Lawrence disaster just north of Boston. A state of emergency was declared by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker on Friday, September 14, 2018.
The fatality happened in Lawrence, where a house explosion blew a chimney apart. Parts of the chimney hit a car that was parked nearby, with three people inside. Leonel Rondon, 18, was rushed to the hospital, but, tragically, died that evening.
Authorities are still urging evacuations from the three towns, but panic and chaotic traffic are hampering efforts.
At least 70 reports of explosions, fire, or gas odors were received by the Massachusetts State Police. Thousands of homes were visited by first responders and gas technicians, checking them for safety, and shutting off gas mains.
Chairman Robert Sumwalt, Chairman of the NTSB, said his agency would look at “the design of the pipeline system, any maintenance or upgrades being done or in process of being done on the pipeline. The integrity management system of the pipeline operator Columbia Gas. We’ll look at the emergency response, the system safety program of the pipeline operator.”
In response to the North Andover, Andover, and Lawrence disaster, state officials announced that hundreds of natural gas technicians are being sent to the three cities to re-establish safe gas service before electrical service can be restored.
North Andover, Andover, and Lawrence disaster leaves area residents stunned
As yet, there is no time-table for a return to normalcy. CNN reports that Kurt Schwartz, director of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, said, “How long is it going to take? As long as it takes. … We don’t know today how long this will take.”
If you or a loved one has been injured in an explosion or fire, or if you have lost a loved one, talk to the compassionate lawyers at Pritzker Hageman law firm. We have years of experience defending the legal rights of survivors of explosions and fires. We have won multi-million dollar settlements for our clients.
Nothing can reverse the loss of a loved one, or make your injuries go away. Funeral expenses, loss of income, medical bills, and pain and suffering are among the issues you will have to face. Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman can help provide you with the resources you need to put your life back together.
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Sanchez, Ray, Nicole Chavez. “’It looked like Armageddon’: Massachusetts governor declares state of emergency after deadly blasts.” CNN, September 15 2018.
Kahn, Shihab. “Massachusetts explosion: Teenager dead after multiple gas blasts and fires north of Boston cause mass evacuations.” Independent, September 14, 2018.