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Con Ed Investigation Continuing As Guyanese Family Mourn

CaribWorldNews, NEW YORK, NY, Tues. April 28, 2009: The President and Chief Operating Officer of Con Edison says his company is continuing its investigation into a Floral Park, Queens explosion that killed a Guyana-born mother of two.

The family of Ghanwatti Boodram, 40, is in mourning following her death in a house explosion Friday afternoon. Boodram, the mother of two sons, ages 10 and 7, was killed when an apparent gas leak caused their two-story house at 80-50 260th Street to explode. Boodram’s body was discovered about 3 hours after the 4:50 p.m. blast

She was a registered nurse in the operating room of the St. Luke’s Division of St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center, according to her husband Dindial Boodram, 46.

Rana, while expressing condolences and prayers to the Boodram family, explained that at 3:34 Friday afternoon, a customer at a nearby address contacted Con Edison with a report of a gas odor outside his home.

A Gas Distribution Services mechanic was dispatched to the location and arrived at approximately 4:05 p.m. The mechanic began a leak investigation and found no atmospheric gas readings in the customer’s home but did find high levels of natural gas in subsurface structures nearby. The mechanic called for assistance and additional personnel were dispatched. Two additional gas distribution employees arrived and were assisting with the gas leak investigation when the house at 80-50 260th Street erupted in flames.

Following the explosion, the Con Edison crew made an emergency call for the FDNY. A number of gas mains and electric services were shut down by company crews, resulting in the interruption of gas and electric service to approximately 50 customers. Electric service was restored on Saturday, April 25.

Rana said preliminary investigation into this incident discovered a dime-sized hole on a section of 2` steel gas main in front of 80-50 260th Street. The hole was located where an electric conduit crossed the gas main.  In addition, the electric service cable within the conduit was damaged as a result of an electrical failure within the conduit.

But he added, `We are continuing our investigation of this tragic incident. An independent, certified laboratory is performing analyses on the affected cables, section of gas pipe, and electric conduit.`