PIKE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — With temperatures below zero in some areas of Pike County Thursday morning, the malfunction of the natural gas system could not have happened at a worse time.
Initially, UGI reported that 2,400 customers were without gas, that number went down to 1,370 and the latest report says that 1,400 people are without the service.
“I woke up this morning my house was 50 degrees. We hope it don’t take all day, because you’re going to have a lot of houses that are frozen up, and freezing hoses make a big mess,” said Craig Williams, Milford resident.
Key Food Marketplace had no heat but is hoping to stay open for customers.
“I want to be open for the community. I hope they do come out because some of the other retail stores are closed,” said Junior Dabashi, Key Food owner.
UGI crews from across the state are going to every customer shutting off the service before the natural gas can be returned to the transmission lines.
“Once every meter is shut off then we can reintroduce gas into the system,” said UGI spokesperson, Don Brominski.
A UGI worker will then needed to return to every customer.
“We will need access before we turn the gas back on,” said Brominski.
Nearby warming centers were set up at the Matamoras fire station.
“We’re just here to help out the public in any way we can, if we can keep them warm that’s what we do,” said Todd Kowinsky, Assistant Chief Matamoras Fire Department.
Delaware Valley School District closed all schools Thursday due to the issue and opened the Delaware Valley Elementary Center, in case people living in Milford were seeking some heat.
Since it was so cold, many were looking for alternatives to heat their homes and businesses.
“My sister-in-law got a couple of heaters from Lowe’s and said she’s bringing them over the house,” said Milford resident Anthony DeMeo.
UGI offered advice to make sure all precautions are taken with auxiliary heat sources.
“The last thing we want is unsafe equipment being used for heating,” said Brominski.
The Pike County Commissioners Office said that all County Government Offices on the Milford Campus including the Administration Building, Courts, and John Street will be closed.
There are additional warming stations that also have food, restrooms, and books available at:
- Blooming Grove Center, 150 Pike County Boulevard, in Lords Valley, till 4:00 pm (WIFI is available).
- Lackawaxen-Shohola Center, Lackawaxen Fire Department, Beisel Beck Road & Route 590, till 3:00 pm
Customers do not need to call to report the outage, but if you smell natural gas UGI asks that you call at 1-800-276-2722.