Over 300 Liberty customers without gas a day after outage

·2 min read
Liberty Utilities is a major North American natural gas utility.  It took over operation of New Brunswick's natural gas distribution system from Enbridge Gas 3 years ago.  (Liberty - image credit)
Liberty Utilities is a major North American natural gas utility. It took over operation of New Brunswick's natural gas distribution system from Enbridge Gas 3 years ago. (Liberty - image credit)

Around 300 Liberty Utilities customers were still not connected to natural gas a day after an outage on Fredericton's north side.

The outage at 12:20 p.m. Tuesday at the intersection of Ring Road and Brookside was caused by a natural gas line disturbance, according to a statement from Liberty Utilities .

Liberty Utilities shut off gas to 317 customers in the area to repair the line.

Although repairs were completed Tuesday, every customer affected by the outage must be reconnected individually, Liberty Utilities said in a statement.

This means customers must be visited and their equipment inspected before service can continue.

Liberty said they plan to begin this process Thursday.

"At this time, all hands are on deck working diligently and safely to have all customers restored as soon as possible," read the statement.

"We want to extend our appreciation to our crews for their careful work with the reconnection, and to our customers for their understanding through this interruption."

Customer frustrated by miscommunication 

On Tuesday, every customer was visited and their gas meters closed. Employees tried to make contact with customers, but if no one was home, a notice was left, the company said/

But customer Jeff Magnussen said he never got a notice when Liberty shut off his gas.

"I'm shocked at the lack of transparency right now," he said. "When you lose gas, you don't know that you've lost gas, so you'd have to rely on Liberty to let you know that. I only found that out by calling in and demanding information."

Liberty updated customers through Twitter on Wednesday, 20 hours after the initial update, and encouraged them to call to get estimates of reconnection times.

Magnussen said he called but Liberty couldn't give him an estimated time for getting his get his gas back.

He said he would have tried to conserve on hot water tank if he had known about the outage, but he only found out after coming home from work and calling customer service.

"I'm just hoping that we can get our service back as soon as possible, because if not, then we might have to go to a family member's house to have showers and stuff like that. I'd just like to know what's going on to prepare."