DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – An already difficult situation got even worse for people in northwest Dallas on Tuesday. More than 2,600 homes are still without gas service while Atmos Energy works to repair underground lines following an explosion last month that claimed the life of a child.
While residents were advised to evacuate during this time, many people opted to remain in their homes during the gas outage. Those people could now be without heat or hot water, as temperatures dropped Tuesday morning and are expected to get even colder at night as the week continues.
Atmos Energy has posted an interactive map on the company’s website, showing where gas service has already been restored. Crews have been working around the clock to get the gas flowing. They are replacing more than two miles of gas pipeline. The massive repair project began after a 12-year-old girl died in a house explosion last month.
The latest update from Atmos Energy explained that about 140 homes in the affected area — from Walnut Hill Lane almost to Northwest Highway, north of Bachman Lake — now have gas. But that still leaves about 2,600 homes without service. And it could be this way for weeks.
Meanwhile, neighbors are doing their best to replace their frustrations with kindness. One family has even set up snack stands for the workers, to show their gratitude. After opening the first stand, the family received so many donations from neighbors that they were able to open six more throughout the work area.
Jatsive Hernandez organized the snack stands for workers. “Once the initial wave of anger kind of passed, in a weird way, this kind of helped a lot of us realize that we are taking our anger out on the wrong people,” she explained on Monday, “and helped us come together.”
But not all residents are staying in their homes. Some people have chosen to evacuate and stay in a hotel until the repair work is complete. Atmos Energy has offered a stipend of $250 per day to families, to help compensate for any costs that they incur during the gas outage.
Many residents are turning out at the Walnut Hill and Bachman Lake Recreation Centers today to receive their second stipend.