Gate City residents say pipe replacement doesn't ease their conc - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Gate City residents say pipe replacement doesn't ease their concerns

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Alagasco crews are preparing to replace four miles of cast iron pipe at the Marks Village housing community. Source: WBRC video Alagasco crews are preparing to replace four miles of cast iron pipe at the Marks Village housing community. Source: WBRC video
The Birmingham Housing Authority sent notices to Gate City residents on Friday, saying they will move residents to other properties as a safety measure. Source: WBRC video The Birmingham Housing Authority sent notices to Gate City residents on Friday, saying they will move residents to other properties as a safety measure. Source: WBRC video
Alagasco workers on site  in Gate City. Source: WBRC video Alagasco workers on site in Gate City. Source: WBRC video
This is a view of the aftermath of a suspected gas explosion at an apartment building in Gate City. Source: WBRC video This is a view of the aftermath of a suspected gas explosion at an apartment building in Gate City. Source: WBRC video
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

Ever since a woman died in an explosion in the Marks Village housing community in Gate City in December, residents say a feeling of unease continues to hover over their neighborhood.

"It's not safe at all," says LaToya Moreland. "We don't feel comfortable out here at all."

Natural gas is suspected as the culprit of the explosion that also injured several others.

Monday, Alagasco crews were on the Gate City grounds, prepping the site for a project that could begin this week to replace four miles of cast iron pipe throughout the property.

An Alagasco spokesperson says the company regularly conducts cast iron pipe replacements throughout the city after conducting what's called a leak survey. Gate City was on the list for 2014. But after the December blast and some other reports, the company moved up the date of the area's survey and  based on those results, they accelerated the cast iron pipe replacement.

Moreland doesn't think it will make much difference, though, when it comes to feeling safer.

"These apartments are so old they need to be torn down and rebuilt from the ground up. That's the truth," she says.

Resident Revina Curry echoes her sentiments, in part.

"I'm happy they is fixing it. Maybe they'll fix some more stuff around here. Maybe they'll tear them down and start back over," Curry said.

The replacement project is expected to last until the end of March. On Friday, residents received flyers from the Birmingham Housing Authoirity saying the BHA will move residents to other properties as a safety measure. But that's raising some concerns.

"I don't know where we gonna go, if it's gonna be some room for anybody. We have kids in school and ain't nobody got transportation, the majority of us ain't got transportation," says Curry. "It's crazy."

On that flyer, there are four numbers for residents to call regarding either gas concerns or information about moving.

FOX6 called those numbers. We got a message that one of the offices was closed. The phone rang without any answer at another number. The third number was disconnected all together. And when we tried to leave a message with an answering service, it took several attempts of going back and forth before our message was taken.

Since our story aired, Alagasco officials say the number on the flyer is not one that should have been given to residents. They say the best number for customers to call with concerns about service is 1-800-292-4008.

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