Salvation Army Massachusetts Division Provides Support in Gas Explosions

September 14, 2018
Heather MacFarlane | | (339) 502-5852

Lawrence, MA (September 14, 2018)--On Thursday, September 13, The Salvation Army Massachusetts Division provided Emergency Disaster Service support to first responders and local residents in three communities north of Boston after a series of gas explosions rocked the community. An estimated 8,000 people were displaced by Thursday’s natural gas incident, which is being described as “Armageddon.” The blasts forced entire neighborhoods in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover to evacuate as local officials scrambled to shut off gas and fight local flames. Between 60-80 fires and three explosions were reported. Nearly 18,000 customers are without power. Gas has been turned off to more than 8,600 homes.

In coordination with other first responders, The Salvation Army canteen and crew deployed to the Operation Staging area and Evacuee Reception Centers to provide hydration, snacks, meals and emotional and spiritual care to responding personnel and local residents. Between Thursday afternoon and Friday morning, our EDS personnel have served:

More than 1000 meals

More than 2350 snacks

More than 1660 beverages

More than 770 cups of coffee

With seven mobile feeding units deployed, more than 11 EDS Teams from across the state responded to the site. Five will continue to be in the community today and for as long as needed.

Additionally, The Salvation Army will be stepping in to provide meals to 500-600 First Responders and Survivors at two staging areas and three of the four local shelters.

“When a disaster like this strikes, The Salvation Army is always there for the community,” said Chris Farrand, Salvation Army Massachusetts Director Emergency Disaster Services. “As soon as this emergency is over, we are immediately shifting modes to help local residents rebuild and recover from what they have lost.”

Neighboring Salvation Army worship and community centers from Lawrence, Lowell, Haverhill, and Fitchburg immediately stepped in to help and have been engaged since our initial EDS response.

The Salvation Army Massachusetts Division serves communities statewide, providing physical, emotional, and spiritual care.

About The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index ( The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyMA.


About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army annually helps more than 30 million Americans overcome poverty, addiction, and economic hardships through a range of social services. By providing food for the hungry, emergency relief for disaster survivors, rehabilitation for those suffering from drug and alcohol abuse, and clothing and shelter for people in need, The Salvation Army is doing the most good at 7,600 centers of operation around the country. In the first-ever listing of “America’s Favorite Charities” by The Chronicle of Philanthropy, The Salvation Army ranked as the country’s largest privately funded, direct-service nonprofit. For more information, visit Follow us on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS and #DoingTheMostGood.

Our Mission

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
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