Boonville sidestepped disaster on Monday. Fires began erupting throughout the central Missouri city around the lunch hour as excess natural gas shot through pilot lights and burst into flames. No injuries have been reported. Emergency crews didn’t know exactly what they had on hand as more than three dozen emergency calls were placed within a few minutes. Boonville Fire Chief Tim Carmichael says four house fires were confirmed. Two destroyed homes. An AmerenUE spokesman says a higher pressure gas was put into older lines that couldn’t handle the pressure. The company shut off gas to 600 homes and businesses and went house to house to relight individual pilot lights.
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