LAWRENCE (CBS) – Licensed plumbers, electricians and appliance technicians are fanning out across the Merrimack Valley to inspect homes and appliances to make sure things are safe and up to code.
“We’re going in to assess all their appliances to see if they are damaged, not damaged. There’s certain ones we’re going to just damage out and we’re going to change controls,” said Jerry Baker of Colombia Gas Company.
Mark Lavigne owns two homes in Lawrence. He’s not only concerned about himself but for his tenants as well.
“They sent a team in with three technicians and they put in carbon monoxide detectors and they checked all of the electrical service,” Lavigne said.
Lawrence residents were hit hard by the gas explosions earlier this month. Thousands still without gas or hot water. Officials say they will get to a couple hundred homes a day and each house is different. Many of these appliances have been condemned.
“There are certain ones that we’re just going to get rid of right off the bat, residential ranges, residential dryers,” said Baker.
“What they’ve done so far seems very thorough and I just want it to be safe when it’s all said and done,” said Lavigne.
Roads are shut down as Colombia gas crews dig up the streets to lay miles and miles of pipe.
Colombia Gas officials say the inspections will take weeks to complete. Crews are working 12-hour shifts and laying more than a mile of pipe a day.
“We are trying to put mains in as fast as we can. We don’t have any timeline yet. It’s really hard,” Baker said.
Lavigne is happy to see progress being made, but he knows there’s much work to be done.
“It’s getting into colder weather so whatever they do, they’ve got to do it quickly,” he said.