If you are still out of your apartment due to the gas explosions, be advised you are not liable to pay rent if heat and hot water are not available in your apartment.
We have contacted the Massachusetts Attorney Generals office and they have confirmed it is unlawful for landlords to insist you pay rent if heat and hot water is not available. Even if you pay for the heat, having service to turn on must be available. It is up to the landlords to file claims with Columbia Gas for their lost rent due to the fact that they cannot provide heat and hot water to their tenants.
If you are unable to come to an understanding with your landlord, first contact Columbia Gas at 1-800-590-5571. The Attorney General’s office tells us that Columbia Gas will contact the landlord and try to assist in the situation. If you still do not get resolution, call the Attorney General’s Office by calling their Merrimack Valley Hotline at 617-573-5370.
Neither landlords nor tenants should suffer any financial loss. Columbia Gas is responsible for all losses caused by the gas explosions.