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O&R: Steady Progress In Restoring Gas Service Disrupted By Fire

Crews working in neighborhoods affected by Thursday's massive fire on North Broadway.

says its efforts to restore natural gas service to 385 customers in Nyack are making steady progress follwing Thursday's on .

The utility this morning reports that nearly Friday and overnight restored gas service to approximately 120 customers. About 285 customer locations have been visited by crews so far, according to O&R. 

Gas service was shut down to the 385 customers late Thursday afternoon when a safety device failed at First Avenue and North Broadway in Nyack as contractors were working on a gas main replacement project. That equipment failure resulted in a fire that burned for over 90 minutes before the main was shut down from neighboring area station sites.

No one was serious injured in the blast, but two Nyack Fire Department volunteers were injured battling the blaze. Also, five workers assisting with the emergency effort were overcome by heat in the incident.

Normal gas work on the O&R system has been suspended to devote all gas resources to the Nyack incident, according to the utility. Mutual aid resources totaling about 60 extra crews joined 30 O&R crews in the field to restore gas service to Nyack. Those crews are from Con Edison, Central Hudson and National Grid. Contractor crews from PPS and ULS are also part of the workforce today.

This work is expected to continue through the weekend.

The three-step gas restoration process is:

  • Each building affected to be visited by a gas technician to shut off the building’s gas service.
  • For O&R to then activate the gas main (which had been de-activated to put out Thursday’s fire) for that area once all the individual gas services have been shut off.
  • Then, a second visit to each building by a gas technician to restore gas service to the individual buildings (light the pilot lights).

Among the streets affected are: Tallman Ave., N. Broadway, North Midland, Haven Court, Front St., Castle Heights Ave., Hart Place, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Avenues and Ackerman Place.

The gas main replacement project is aimed at upgrading the Nyack gas system from a low pressure to high pressure system. One of the advantages of a high-pressure system is that it features more valves that can isolate outages and limit their scope. The low pressure system does not have this feature.     

The damage from the accident has left a section of North Broadway closed north of High Avenue. The fire damaged the exterior of a building at the corner of North Broadway and First Avenue, but Nyack firefighters said they were able to prevent the fire from doing any significant structural damage to Victoria Mews, the commercial and residential building.

Nyack Mayor Jen White said that residents of all but three units at Victoria Mews have returned home. Three units sustained water damage in the firefighting efforts.

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