Gas main break leaves hundreds without heat

Otho, Kalo, and Coalville affected

OTHO — A damaged gas main in Otho left hundreds without heat for several hours Wednesday night, according to Tina Hoffman, spokesperson for Mid­American Energy Co.

The main was damaged at about 3:30 p.m. by a third party contractor, Hoffman reported.

She said the break occurred at 2488 Mining Blvd.

Gas service in the communities of Otho, Coalville and Kalo were disrupted. About 260 customers were affected, Hoffman reported.

Crews from MidAmerican Energy Co. and Northern Natural Gas responded to the area.

MidAmerican was working to restore heat to the people’s homes as of press time.

To do that, they needed to go around to all homes to shut the meters off before turning the gas back on.

Crews from around the state were called to help. At least 26 additional staff were in the area, Hoffman said.

Some came from places like Sioux City, Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Iowa City.

According to Hoffman, crews began relighting residents’ pilot lights at about 9:30 p.m.

Hoffman said it could take three to four hours to restore service to all customers.

“We are hoping to get all customers restored by around midnight or so,” Hoffman said.

The Otho Fire Station, 204 Rake St., was opened up for people who needed to keep warm.

Webster County Public Health and Webster County Emergency Management Agency offered their assistance during the incident.


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