NORTH BEND -- Clean-up is likely to begin this week in North Bend nearly three months after an explosion that destroyed several businesses. The explosion started in a restaurant that was under renovation.
City officials had to wait for the investigation to conclude before they could move forward with clean up efforts. The cause has been determined to be accidental as someone left a few gas valves open and that caused an explosion. At this point they are unable to determine who left the valves open.
There were also a few other factors that played a role in the delayed clean-up. The city had to wait for insurance to approve its payment for the clean-up and there was also an asbestos concern as well.
Neighbors still remember that scary April morning like it was yesterday.
“We just heard this awful explosion and my husband asked me, ‘Are you ok?” Arlene Bittner said. “We didn’t know what it was. They told us all to get back at one point, because there could be another explosion.”
Several businesses were destroyed that day. Many of them have since relocated and others are figuring out what to do next.