Indianapolis Power & Light and Electric and Sewer and Energy & Environment and Utilities and Public Safety

Downtown getting blast-resistant manhole covers

December 9, 2011

Utility crews are installing about 100 new manhole covers in downtown Indianapolis that are designed to reduce the extent of damage from underground explosions and fires.

The work follows at least six underground electrical explosions in the city's downtown over the past two years. One of those blasts happened near windows to the governor's Statehouse office, with others damaging cars and sending manhole covers flying.

The new covers are being installed near Lucas Oil Stadium and around locations for activities tied to February's Super Bowl, according to The Indianapolis Star. Indianapolis Power & Light has more than 1,200 manholes in the downtown area.

IPL engineer Mike Holtsclaw told WTHR-TV that the new covers lock into place and are designed to lift about 3 inches in event of an explosion.

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