GLENROCK, Wyo. — More than a thousand people were left without gas Monday and Tuesday after a pipeline that supplies SourceGas’ natural gas system in the town of Glenrock was interrupted, prompting emergency services officials to open a recreation center as a warming station after temperatures dropped near zero degrees.
The gas company turned off all meters in town and began relighting furnaces and stoves after the gas went out on Monday. Efforts continued Tuesday to contact people who were not at home.
“We continue to relight homes across town. Most homes have had at least one contact attempt and we will continue to work to reach remaining residents. We will begin calling emergency contact numbers on accounts today as needed to reach those homes where we are unable to make contact,” the company said in a statement Tuesday.
SourceGas employees from around Wyoming and western Nebraska were called in to help.
SourceGas asked customers to have someone at home so company workers could relight appliances and warned customers not to try relighting appliances on their own.
Emergency Services Coordinator Russ Dalgarn said Tuesday that no one stayed overnight at the recreation center and there have been no emergency calls for help because of the cold so far.
Emergency service agencies have trained for crises, but not a major gas outage, Dalgarn said. “We never thought it would happen,” he said.
Some people said they had alternate sources of heat, including space heaters and fireplaces, but they worried about others who did not have other sources of heat. “We can take care of ourselves very well, but we do worry about people around town that aren’t set up like we are,” said John Mercer, a SourceGas customer.
Mary-Alice Hand Mercer, who also was affected by the outage, agreed. “It’s very worrisome especially for families that don’t have fireplaces or other sources of heat,” she said.
Kylee Hall was one of those left without heat. “We’ll probably have to buy a heater. Then we’ve been lighting candles all over the place, so hopefully it will raise the temperature a little bit,” Hall said.
SourceGas officials said their employees were working around the clock to get gas is restored to every home in Glenrock, despite the Veteran’s Day holiday.