Many Residents Return Home After Partial Evacuation Lift
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - One Grand Junction man barely made it inside the cleared area of the evacuation lift after being displaced for the last few days.
Bill Johnson remembers exactly what he was doing right before the gas explosion on Tuesday.
"I was actually getting ready to start my dishes and I had been outside just checking the mail shortly before. I walked back in, got to the sink and that's when I heard the explosion," said Johnson.
Johnson, like many others in the area, were told to evacuate and slowly but surely some of those folks have been able to return home.
"First night we were over at the high school and then the hotel last night," said Johnson.
More than a dozen folks filled a hallways at the Seventh Adventist Church, the incident head quarters, to hear the latest update.
Officials say the levels of explosive gas have gone down and residents living on 7th Street south of Mesa Avenue can return home.
"My house is right on the line and I was wondering which direction am I? Then he called and told us by house number that our house was clear to go back and I was very happy to say the least," said Johnson.
Xcel crews and firefighters will escort each resident to their home as the evacuations are lifted, check it for safety, relight the pilot light and turn their power back on.
"First thing I'm probably going to do is clean and pick everything back up and get everything organized again ... get used to being home again," said Johnson.