SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There are a lot of old pipes in Springfield, and gas leaks have been a problem in the city.
Columbia Gas said they’re currently working to correct 162 “Grade 2 leaks” in Springfield. But they’ve already repaired hundreds of others.
Springfield City Councilor Jesse Lederman said there were 590 leaking gas lines in Springfield in 2017. Since then, Lederman said Columbia Gas has committed to quickly replacing those pipes.
“That number seems to have dropped down to approximately 348, and with those ones that were targeted, those were some of the largest leaks,” Lederman told 22News. “We wanted to make sure we were going after some of the largest ones first.”
A Columbia Gas representative told Springfield leaders the 162 “Grade 2 leaks,” are currently non-hazardous but could become a hazard. He said those will all be repaired by December 1.
A Northampton woman who works in Springfield said the progress is comforting, but gas is still a concern.
“I really congratulate Columbia Gas on being on the cutting edge of fixing gas leaks,” said Marty Nathan of Northampton. “We need to plug the leaks, but overall we need to get away from using gas. It is dangerous. It’s dangerous to human health.”
But leaks aren’t the only concerns with gas lines. In Monson and Palmer on Tuesday, gas lines were briefly above normal pressure. The increase occurred only in the main gas lines for a few minutes, and not inside any homes.
Columbia Gas said homes in Monson and Palmer have regulators that maintain pressure at safe levels. The gas company stressed that there was never any danger to customers and that homes connected to very low-pressure gas lines don’t have these regulators, because it’s safe without them.
If you want to know if your home has a regulator, Columbia Gas said they are typically a round disc attached to the service line.
It is located where the line comes out of the ground, and just before the meter.