[Photo Thursday by Peter Brownscombe]
The statement is dated last evening at 6:15 … via the Con Ed newsroom…
Con Edison this morning shut off gas to 219 customers (187 residential; 32 commercial) in the East Village neighborhood of Manhattan while the Fire Department of New York continues recovery work at the site of yesterday’s explosion and buildings collapse on 2nd Avenue near 7th Street.
Meantime, we keep the missing and injured in our thoughts and prayers.
As we do in all cases when a customer is upgrading to a new gas service, we conducted careful inspections at 121 2nd Avenue. Our records show the work of the building’s plumber failed two inspections, including the inspection our personnel conducted yesterday afternoon. At no time was use of the new service line authorized by Con Edison. That service was locked to ensure that it would not be used. The ground-floor restaurant was being served by its current, smaller gas service line.
Con Edison continues to work with the FDNY and NYPD to restore service to customers as soon as it is deemed safe. We have contacted the customers shut off today and have also established an incident workgroup to focus 24/7 on the needs and concerns of all customers who live in the impacted zone.
Safety is always our priority, and we continue to urge people to call 9-1-1 or their gas utility immediately if they smell a gas odor.
The New York Times has an updated story on the explosion. They spoke with Sushi Park owner Hyeonil Kim, who "wondered how the apartments upstairs in the five-story building at 121 Second Avenue had been getting hot water and gas for cooking. The only gas line coming into the building had been dedicated to his restaurant, he said."
Mr. Kim said he believed tenants had started moving into the building’s upstairs floors last summer, after the landlord, Maria Hrynenko, completed renovations. He said he suspected they were getting their gas from the neighboring building, 119 Second Avenue, which city records show is also owned by Ms. Hrynenko. She did not return calls for comment on Friday. Mayor Bill de Blasio suggested at a news conference on Friday that city officials had a similar suspicion.
Read the full article here.
To date, two people remain missing… 23-year-old Nicholas Figueroa, who was eating at Sushi Park, and 26-year-old Moises Lucon, a busboy at the restaurant.
[Moises Lucon photo via PIX]
The Post has more about both men here.