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Eversource debuts new explode-proof manhole covers – Boston News, Weather, Sports

BOSTON (WHDH) – Eversource Energy has debuted new manhole covers that the company said will prevent them from occasionally exploding several feet in the air, as several covers have done in Boston this summer.

Their “energy-release manhole covers” are outfitted with latches that will allow the covers to come up only about four inches to let pressure out, but overall stay in place. The covers also can reseal themselves.

Boston has seen at least five manhole covers explode in three separate incidents. In May, two covers exploded near the Prudential Center, causing flames to shoot into the street. A few weeks later, two explosions happened in the Financial District, injuring a woman and shattering windows. Witnesses have described these covers shooting up to 15 feet in the air.

So far, Eversource has installed around 1,600 new covers in and around Boston out of about 5,600. Since installing them, one has exploded, but the company said the new design worked, despite the noise of the explosion being a bit startling to passersby.

Eversource said it plans to replace all manhole covers in downtown Boston by the end of next year.

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