While city agencies continue to operate in the vicinity of Thursday’s Flatiron steam pipe explosion, things are beginning to 'normalize,' the Office of Emergency Management said.
While city agencies continue to operate in the vicinity of Thursday’s Flatiron steam pipe explosion, things are beginning to 'normalize,' the Office of Emergency Management said. (Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)

While city agencies continue to operate in the vicinity of Thursday’s Flatiron steam pipe explosion, things are beginning to “normalize,” the Office of Emergency Management said.

The explosion occurred during the morning rush hour commute in the vicinity of West 21st Street and Fifth Avenue, and resulted in the closure of several nearby streets, disruptions and reroutes on buses and subways and the closure of 49 buildings in the vicinity.

Of those buildings, 28 were of “greatest concern,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said last week as the Flatiron steam explosion spewed debris containing asbestos onto streets and building facades. Though the air cleared quickly from harmful asbestos, the nearby buildings needed to be assessed to see if the dangerous material entered the buildings and AC units.

 

Things are starting to normalize in the area of the Flatiron steam pipe explosion, emergency officials said. (Twitter/ConEd)

As of Sunday night, nine buildings are cleared for re-occupancy, the OEM said. They include: 119 Fifth Avenue; 146 Fifth Avenue; 162 Fifth Avenue; 9 West 19th Street; 9 West 20th Street; 19 West 21st Street; 22 West 21st Street; 7 East 20th Street; and 11 West 19th Street, which includes 17 West 19th, 10 West 20th and 16 West 20th.

How to report Flatiron steam pipe explosion asbestos

Any resident who sees visible asbestos contamination in their apartment from the Flatiron steam pipe explosion is asked to contact Con Edison by calling 212-358-4565 or visiting the agency’s reception center at the Clinton School at 10 E. 15th Street.

Additionally, the “hot zone” following the steam pipe explosion has been reduced as 18th, 19th and 22nd Streets have reopened to traffic, the OEM said. While Fifth Avenue between 20th and 21st Streets is still closed to pedestrians and vehicles, it is open for bus traffic, though the buses skip all stops between 18th and 23rd Streets.

The Con Ed reception center at the Clinton School will remain open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and there will be two public briefings on Monday regarding the Flatiron steam pipe explosion. The first, from 5:30-6:30 p.m., will be for building owners and affected businesses, while one for affected tenants will take place from 7-8 p.m.

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