Hotel rooms, apartments, travel trailers being offered to residents impacted by Merrimack Valley gas disaster

LAWRENCE, MASS. (WHDH) - Alternative housing is being offered to residents impacted by last month’s gas disaster, including hotel rooms, apartments, travel trailers and warming shelters, until their gas service is fully restored, according to an announcement issued Friday.

The state has secured 3,097 hotels, 164 apartments and 360 travel trailers for residents without gas service. They have also set up a congregate shelter and warming station capable of accommodating up to 1,000 people, according to the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.

All residents in the impacted area currently without gas service are eligible for housing support until their service is restored.

The hotel rooms and apartments are currently available and travel trailers will be made available in the coming days, the city said. The congregate shelter will be available to residents beginning on Monday.

“Columbia Gas will be proactively reaching out, beginning October 8th, to its most vulnerable customers, including the elderly, families with young children, and people who have access and functional needs or medical conditions, and to residents whose homes will not have their gas service restored until after November 1st to assess their needs and offer to facilitate alternative housing assignments,” the statement read.

Residents interested in alternative housing should contact Columbia Gas’ claims line at 1-800-590-5571.

“The housing assistance team will verify residence and collect information for family needs such as size of family, special considerations, age of children and household members,” the announcement read. “If qualified, approval of temporary housing will be provided during the call and the information will be passed to a housing assignment team who will call you with your placement.”

Columbia gas is aiming to restore gas to the impacted areas by Nov. 19.

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