Georgetown Gas Saga Continues


The saga continues.

Last month, The Georgetowner reported the disconcerting story of longtime Georgetown resident Edward Segal and the Masked Men of the Gas Company. The masked, hooded and helmeted workers with oxygen bottles on their belts were spotted by Segal when he was walking his dog on 28th Street below Dumbarton on June 13. After the workers left, there remained a large trench and signs reading: No Smoking, Gas Venting.

“It was scary,” said Segal, who lives nearby. “We didn’t know what was going on.” He filed a complaint with Washington Gas and D.C.’s Office of the People’s Counsel about the lack of notification and information.

On Sunday, July 15, Segal, a former CEO of the Beverly Hills/Greater Los Angeles and Marin Associations of Realtors, reported that the OPC had received a “non-response response” from the gas company. “It listed a series of policy statements but failed to address the specific issues of my complaint,” Segal said. “My complaint was specific and detailed in terms of my issues and concerns. [It suggested] reforms and improvements in connection with the utility’s failure of accountability, transparency and communication over local gas leaks and repairs.”

As a result, Segal has gone a step further.

“Yesterday I filed a complaint against Washington Gas Light Co. with the Public Service Commission, which has jurisdiction over the gas company,” Segal wrote. “According to the staff of the commission, the gas company has 14 days to respond. Based on the response to this complaint, there are other steps I can take against Washington Gas.”

Tomorrow, July 18, Segal is meeting with two members of the Advisory Neighborhood Commission who have expressed concern about the issue. Fatal gas explosions are not unknown in the District, even as the incidents of exploding street gas covers of five years ago seem to have been arrested.

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