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$185K Donated For Allentown Gas Blast Relief

(Photo of the aftermath of the deadly gas explosion in Allentown earlier this year. The surcharge would pay for aging infrastructure. Credit: Oren Liberman, CBS 3)

(Photo of the aftermath of the deadly gas explosion in Allentown earlier this year. The surcharge would pay for aging infrastructure. Credit: Oren Liberman, CBS 3)

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ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Charitable officials says more than $185,000 has been donated to the 35 families affected by the massive gas explosion and fire that killed five people in the Pennsylvania city of Allentown in February.

The families received amounts ranging from $500 for minor damage to more than $20,000 for those whose houses were destroyed.

Five people were killed in the blast and the ensuing fire, which raged for hours as utility crews labored to cut the flow of gas.

Utility company UGI also donated $20,000 to each of the families who lost their homes.

The Allentown blast and other fatal explosions in Philadelphia and San Bruno, Calif., have prompted federal officials to announce increased oversight of companies that operate oil and natural gas pipelines.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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