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I know, I know – you’re all tired of hearing about last week’s National Grid gas outage along Ocean Parkway in Gravesend. And, after sounding off about the lack of coverage in other media, I thought we were pretty much done with it, too.

But, apparently, one more entity wants to make sure their voice is heard on the matter: National Grid itself.

The company produced a video on YouTube to help visualize the tremendous amount of resources deployed, not the least of which was 300 crews working around the clock for most of the week. It also shows some of the on-site and off-site planning and logistics that went into the effort. Clearly, it must have been an exceptional operation for National Grid to go out of their way to showcase it.

How do you think National Grid did in responding to the Ocean Parkway gas outage?

National Grid natural gas began pumping through all the Gravesend pipelines on Saturday, after workers finished pumping out 50,000 gallons of water. It capped off a five-day ordeal for 1,200 households forced to go without hot water and other amenities.

The company will now begin refilling the 160 excavation sites they dug throughout the neighborhood.

On Sunday, they issued the following press release announcing the restoration of service, and thanking the community for their cooperation:

As of Saturday, all customers affected by the Gravesend natural gas outage have been contacted to have their appliances re-lit. All have been visited for re-lights, 93 percent have been restored, National Grid is coordinating around the customers’ schedules and working with plumbers on a few sites to safely restore the remaining locations.

The extensive restoration effort involved purging over 50,000 gallons of water from about four miles of gas main spanning an area of 46 blocks after a high-pressure water main leak sent thousands of gallons of water into the local gas system.

Over 300 crews have worked around-the-clock since the outage began. The crews have dug over 160 excavations to support the water pumping effort. Some of the excavations will remain open for a period in order for National Grid to monitor that additional pumping is not required. These excavations around the neighborhood are clearly marked, but National Grid urges residents to be extra aware of their surroundings and use caution, especially at night.

Once all repairs are permanent the excavations will be filled and roads and sidewalks will be restored and paved. In addition, over the next several weeks the company will continue to have trucks and crews in the area completing work to restore the gas system to normal operation.

Customers should call National Grid at 718-643-4050 if they have any questions or additional service needs.

“We can’t thank the community enough for their cooperation and appreciate their patience as we complete the remaining service re-lights,” said Robert DeMarinis, National Grid vice president, New York Gas. “We will continue to work in and with the community on the permanent restoration effort in the coming weeks.”

We got an e-mail from National Grid yesterday afternoon informing us that service is now available to 100 percent of the area along Ocean Parkway that has been without gas since Tuesday.

The company completed pumping 46,000 gallons of water out of flooded gas pipes and reopened the lines in full yesterday. By the afternoon, National Grid had visited 900 of the 1,200 households affected to turn the gas back on and relight appliances.

They continued to make the rounds to the remaining 300 households, only needing access to the homes from the landlord to relight it.

Natural gas service to 1,200 Gravesend homes was cut after a high-pressure water main leak on Ocean Parkway and Avenue U erupted on Tuesday. Thousands of gallons of water gushed into a 12-inch low-pressure National Grid gas main.

UPDATE (5:33 p.m.): Here’s the latest from National Grid. Looks like they may theoretically restore 100 percent service today after all, assuming they can access the homes:

More than 50 percent have been restored (about 600 meters).

An additional 20 percent (about 200 meters) are available for re-light once we have access to the homes.  We are contacting customers and leaving a note to let them know that we need access to their homes to re-light the appliances.

Restoration efforts continue, we are pumping water out of the remaining sections of the gas main so that we can make the remaining 30 percent (400 meters) available for re-light by the end of the day.  So far more than 32,000 gallons of water have been removed from the system.

We will be onsite over the weekend to continue to re-light customers based on their availability.

Original post:

National Grid’s spokesperson Karen Young just got in touch with us with an update on the Ocean Parkway natural gas situation. She writes:

Since the last update, we restored service to 40 percent and we’re in the process of re-lighting another 20 percent as access to the homes becomes available. We have pumped out approximately 32,000 gallons of water.  Crews continue to work hard today.

Natural gas service to 1,200 Gravesend homes was cut after a high-pressure water main leak on Ocean Parkway and Avenue U erupted on Tuesday. Thousands of gallons of water gushed into a 12-inch low-pressure National Grid gas main, and workers must go door-to-door to relight appliances.

National Grid vans pack the Ocean Parkway service roads as over 300 crews respond to the scene.

National Grid has resumed service to 30 percent of the Gravesend households that have been without natural gas since Tuesday, when a nearby water main leak caused gas lines to flood. But the company added that an additional 100 customers were impacted after water moved up the line into other parts of the neighborhood yesterday.

National Grid workers go door to door to turn on and off gas lines in homes.

In all, 1,200 households are affected, and more than 350 customers are now back in service. That number was announced last night in a company press release, which also indicated that they expected to restore service to just under half of the affected residents by this morning.

“The cooperation and support of the Gravesend community has been incredible throughout this emergency outage and the restoration effort,” said National Grid’s Vice President of New York Gas Robert DeMarinis in the press release. “We located a mobile emergency operating center bus along Ocean Parkway and have been working directly with customers and community leaders from within the community. This unfortunate intrusion of water into the gas main has been an inconvenience for our customers, we will continue to do everything we can to restore service safely and as quickly as possible.”

Natural gas service to the homes was snarled after a high-pressure water main leak on Ocean Parkway and Avenue U erupted on Tuesday. Thousands of gallons of water gushed into a 12-inch low-pressure National Grid gas main.

The majority of the customers live along Ocean Parkway, from Avenue U to Avenue Z, with additional homes affected on side and cross streets. Sheepshead Bites remains the only news outlet covering the crisis, which is affecting an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 people.

More than 300 National Grid crews have been working around the clock to pump water out of the pipes and resume service to homes. The teams dug more than 85 excavation sites throughout the neighborhood, deploying specialized cameras to detect water in the gas lines. So far, approximately 24,000 gallons of water have been removed from the system.

Once all the water is out, the workers must visit each one of the 1,200 affected homes to turn the gas back on and relight appliances. Residents must be home to answer doors so the teams can do this. If you have any doubt that the person is a National Grid employee, Sheepshead Bites reminds you to request identification.

Photo by PayPaul

ONLY ON SHEEPSHEAD BITES: A National Grid representative said the company was forced to cut gas to 1,100 Gravesend clients this week, after a leaking water main interfered with their gas lines and caused a drop in pressure.

Gas is cut along the areas marked in red. (Map courtesy of Google Maps)

The spokesperson said they are hoping to restore all service by Friday, and gas is already flowing in some areas. Sheepshead Bites is the first and only news outlet covering the problem, which is affecting a population the size of a small town.

The incident is not related to any gas leak and there is no danger for residents, the representative noted, but service to 1,100 households on an approximately half-mile strip of Ocean Parkway means they’ve had to deploy 300 crews working around the clock for a speedy restoration.

“We want to do this safely and as quickly as possible and we appreciate the coordination of the customers in that area,” said spokesperson Karen Young.

Young noted that the work is a very labor intensive project. First, workers had to go door-to-door to ensure gas service is safely off in each home. Once they identified the source of the leak, which they’ve done, it must be repaired. Then the water must be pumped out of the gas lines. Finally, workers need to go door-to-door again to relight appliances in the homes.

“We’ve made some progress. We are breaking this down into areas for the work, and so we have restored gas service to about 233 customers,” Young said. “We know it’s a big project and a big job.”

The geographic boundaries of the affected area are Ocean Parkway from Avenue U to Brighton Court (near Avenue Z), and on Gravesend Neck Road from Ocean Parkway to East 2nd Street. National Grid first became aware of the problem on Tuesday morning.

The crews will continue to work around the clock, which means late-night construction noise that could disturb residents.

“We apologize that the work may be noisy, but it’s necessary during this emergency situation so that we can get the service back on as quickly as possible,” Young said, adding that doing the work in sections means crews will not be working in one place for an extended period of time.

UPDATE (6:40 p.m.): National Grid just issued a press release. Click here to read it.