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Gas Smell Forces Evacuation of Worthington Street Shelter

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — When some employees at Springfield shelter Friends of the Homeless smelled gas, they wasted no time evacuating. Since Friday’s blast people have understandably been on edge. “Clearly we’re concerned because of what happened further down Worthington St. and we needed to get people out right away,” Executive Director Bill Miller said.

Although it may seem like everyone has been complaining about it, Dennis Leger, Executive Aide to Springfield’s Fire Commissioner says that’s not the case. “We’ve had 4 calls in 2 days for gas, two in this area, and two in another part of the city. So it’s not out of the ordinary, I don’t think people are panicking by any means, so it seems to be consistent with what happens,” Leger said.

Luckily there was no actual gas leak. Just a blown out stove pilot light that gave off the smell.

Friends of the Homeless has an apartment building at 501 Worthington St., and 18 people lost their home again after Friday’s blast. People say they’re still on edge after today’s smell of gas.We are a little bit on edge because of what happened down the street, because it’s really close, but, so far so good,” Denise Rivera said. “We are on edge. We have people in the building who were down the street when the explosion happened so they are petrified,” Miller added.

Those who live here are now back in the shelter, which is already full, especially during this time of year.

Friends of the Homeless will file a claim with Columbia Gas of Massachusetts for the lost building.


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