The unusual October snowstorm in North East US sent trees and branches crashing down on electrical wires and equipment across the states.
In Connecticut, all of the 149 cities and towns served by Connecticut Light & Power (CL&P) were affected by the snowstorm.
It was reported that about 770,000 CL&P customers were without power earlier this morning due to the snowstorm, surpassing the peak number of outages caused by Tropical Storm Irene two months ago.
Jeff Butler, president and COO at CL&P said:
“This will not be a <<quick fix>>…this may take more than a week to restore all of our customers. There are reports of trees down practically everywhere.”
“To help with damage assessments, we’re using two helicopters. Our other priorities today are handling emergency situations and working in partnership with the towns to clear the blocked roads.”
The snowstorm effects differ from Tropical Storm Irene’s in that the storm has caused significant damage to transmission lines, which are the lines that take power from electric generating plants and feeds it to the distribution grid that serves local homes and businesses.
CL&P is scheduling crews to work around the clock until restoration efforts are complete. During a multi-day restoration such as this, approximately 75% of crews will begin their shifts around 07:00 a.m. in order to maximize daylight hours and be most productive.
The remaining 25% of CL&P crews will begin their shifts around 03:00 p.m. and will work through the night.
“The safety of our employees, contractors and our customers is of our utmost concern and we want to make sure everyone working on this restoration has appropriate time to rest between shifts,” added Jeff Butler.
For their safety, CL&P also reminds customers to stay at least 10 feet away from all wires. Assume any downed, hanging or burning power lines are live and dangerous.
“If a power line falls on your vehicle while you’re inside, stay there. Don’t touch anything outside the vehicle and wait for emergency crews. Call 9-1-1 immediately with any emergency condition,” advised CL&P.
“To report outages or check the status of an outage, visit cl-p.com or call 800-286-2000. Our automated phone and online systems can rapidly process your report and help us speed restoration efforts. For helpful tips and news updates, go to our website at cl-p.com, follow us on Twitter @CTLightandPower and like us at Facebook.com/CTLightandPower. You can also get updates on outages in your town by texting “outage” and your zip code to 24612 (texting fees may apply),” CL&P also said.
CL&P has been part of everyday life in Connecticut for more than 100 years, providing safe and reliable electric service to homes, neighborhoods and businesses. With 1.2 million customers in 149 cities and towns, CL&P is improving the environments you live in, by offering programs in energy conservation, economic development and environmental stewardship. CL&P is a Northeast Utilities company (NYSE: NU). For more information, please visit www.cl-p.com , like us on Facebook at facebook.com/CTLightandPower and follow us on Twitter @CTLightandPower.