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December 14, 2018
Series of explosions set fire to Massachusetts homes
World News

Series of explosions set fire to Massachusetts homes

Firefighters at house with smoke coming out of itImage copyright

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Firefighters continue to battle fires in homes across the area

At least 39 homes and buildings in towns outside of Boston, Massachusetts were hit in a series of suspected gas explosions, officials say.

Local police reported dozens of “fires and explosions” in the towns of Lawrence, Andover and North Andover, saying the “number will grow”.

The explosions have resulted in evacuations and several serious and minor injuries, local media say.

Local gas and electric companies are cutting service to the area.

Merrimack Valley officials believe the explosions could have been set off by pressure issues with Columbia Gas lines, but have not confirmed a cause.

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Local media say at one point there were 18 fires burning in the town of Lawrence

The lines are being depressurised by the company, but “it will take some time”, state police said, advising anyone who smells gas or has Columbia Gas service to “evacuate their homes immediately”.

Neighbouring Police Chief Joseph Solomon, who came in to assist from the town of Methuen, said there were so many fires burning that “you can’t even see the sky”, according to the Lowell Sun.

The Sun reports that fire officials have called the explosions a mass casualty incident, though there were no specifics regarding injuries.

The towns are located approximately 27 miles (43km) north of Boston.

The State Fire Marshal’s Office and the FBI are involved in the investigation.

Source BBC News

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