One dead, a dozen injured in gas blasts in Boston suburbs

Teenager killed as 'gas explosions' set homes ablaze

Teenager killed as 'gas explosions' set homes ablaze

The Massachusetts State Police said, "MSP Troopers on scene, more responding, to Lawrence/Andover/North Andover to assist with scene security and traffic control after multiple suspected gas explosions and structure fires".

Leonel Rondon, 18, of Lawrence, was killed after a house explosion sent a chimney falling onto his auto.

At least 10 people have been reportedly injured in the incidents that may have resulted from an issue with gas service, officials said.

Hours before the explosions, the company had unveiled plans to upgrade gas lines across MA, including in the areas where the blasts happened. Red Cross reception centers were setup at the Andover Senior Center and Youth Center, North Andover High School, as well as Parthum and Arlington Schools in Lawrence.

A person is dead and dozens of homes have been set ablaze in a gas explosion fire in the U.S. state of MA. All of those fires have been extinguished, but at peak, 18 fires were burning at the same time.

Another six people are being treated in hospital.

CBS Boston station WBZ reports emergency crews have responded to dozens of different addresses and extensive damage could be seen at a number of homes.

Residents living in those communities with homes serviced by Columbia Gas were told to evacuate.

Officials were shutting down power in Lawrence, North Andover and Andover because of the emergency, state police said on Thursday evening.

"Good thing I wasn't home or I wouldn't be talking about it", she said outside an elementary school in Lawrence that the Red Cross had converted into a shelter for about 170 people.

Governor Charlie Baker said state and local authorities are investigating but that it could take days or weeks before they turn up answers.

"Columbia Gas is investigating what happened on its system today", NiSource spokesman Ken Stammen said.

A map posted by Massachusetts State Police shows dozens of explosions and fires spread over the area. "My first thought was this is a gas explosion". It was not clear whether work was happening there Thursday, and a spokeswoman did not immediately comment.

Andover Town Manager Andrew P. Flanagan, Police Chief Patrick E. Keefe and Fire Chief Michael Mansfield said Andover fire responders had put out a total of 35 fires. "What we need folks to do is that if it's happening in your home, you have a amusing smell, just evacuate, come out to the street".

"It's definitely a scary situation at the moment", he said.

The three communities house more than 146,000 residents about 40 kilometres north of Boston, near the New Hampshire border.

Police Chief Joseph Solomon in nearby Methuen says there are so many fires "you can't even see the sky".

Warren and Seaman said the last time they responded to MA for a major blaze was the Malden Mills factory fire in Lawrence in 1995.

Liberty Utilities spokesperson John Shore said the company has on-call technicians standing ready to help Columbia Gas.

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