Utility Crews Stream Into Westchester To Help Restore Power

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Downed overhead wires -- more than 100,000 of them -- are hampering the effort to restore power in Westchester County. Photo Credit: Flickr Con Ed feed

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – In addition to destruction and mayhem, super-storm Sandy has also caused a massive restoration and cleanup effort throughout Westchester County.

But that effort is not proceeding as quickly as some customers think it should.

"We drove around the past couple of days, and have yet to spot a single Con Ed truck, crew or anything resembling a utility worker,” said Hawthorne resident Eli j. Fleischer.  "[Workers] are not on poles or repairing downed wires… Not even driving by on the roads”

But Consolidated Edison said external contractors, some 1,600 of them, are now deployed in or on their way to the five boroughs of New York City and Westchester County, where Con Ed’s coverage extends.

Calls and inquiries to NYSEG, which covers sections of Northern Westchester County, were not returned.

Allan Drury, a spokesperson from  Con Ed, made no specific prediction as to when full service would be restored in the region.

“External contractors and mutual aid workers from as far away as California are working to get customers’ power back on," he said. 

Drury said the more than 100,000 overhead electrical wires that came down during the storm, which contributed to the loss of power for more than 900,000 customers throughout the region, are obstacles in the restoration. The power losses from last year’s Hurricane Irene, he said, were small in comparison, at 203,821 customers without power.

Workers are facing challenges throughout the region, said Drury, who said he understands residents’ frustration with extended power outages.

“There are still areas customers whose residence are blocked by downed trees and flooded streets,” he added. "If you don’t see a truck on your street, it doesn’t mean that crews are not working to restore your service.”

But Fleischer said he would feel better seeing crews at work.

“If there are Con Ed crews out in the area, I haven’t seen them anywhere near here in the last four days," he said. "Maybe they are literally ghost crews.”

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Comments (9)

adoradeny:

This year I want to offer my wife a special winter holiday. So for this occasion I was thinking to go on a trip far away from home, without our children, to have a weekend just for us. We will take a hike, go cycling, do snowboarding, do something exciting together. It sounds good, right?!

valhallavoice:

Waking up to find out, denials aside, Bloomberg diverting resources from outer boroughs and Westchester for the NYC Marathon broadcast on Obama mouthpiece NBC. Mt Pleasant Town trees still sit on houses 5 days after the storm. Out of town contractors can't believe that we have such hugh trees in residential areas just waiting to fall every year. But we have our priorities, recreation, events at the international terror target and family fun park, town pools. Myopic one party towns, little fiefdoms of Bloomberg wannabes.

joe smith1:

OK, no one is going to like this but. Is there anyone who thinks that power will not come on eventually? Who really thinks that constant complaining will somehow magically restore power any quicker? What in the world can the local elected officials possibly do to expedite the restoration of power? They do not have the power of a governor to mobilize the national guard, etc. Yes, this is an uncomfortable experience, but anyone that is driving around keeping tabs on what Con Ed is doing (or not doing in their eyes) has too much time on their hands. It is day 3 or 4 of this storm and not even wishful thinking was going to get 100% of the power restored in this time. Some people may go through this for another 6 or 7 days, which is truly unfortunate, and I do empathize with them. So what will happen next? More complaining about Con Ed, or any utility company. This happens all the time during snow storms where power is lost for relatively long periods of time, or in other areas prone to natural disasters where there are large populations. Elected officials will rant and rave, hold hearings, and, you know what, very little will change. Secondly, lots of people will unrealistically call for overhead power lines to be buried. Do the math, this is too expensive to even discuss further. The power company will raise rates. Can anything be done to prevent this from happening in the future? Realistically, no. Additional clearing of trees from overhead wires is one step but people will complain about that as well. Have patience folks. The shock of this storm will wear off, gas lines will subside and power will return!

Jordan isaacson:

We are always the last in Chappaqua to see Con Ed, we haven't seen a single law enforcement officer either, and where is the Town Supervisor? if it wasn't for The Daily Voice we would have no clue what is going on

ajw315:

I have yet to see any ConEd crews and only saw one truck drive though Hartsdale today.

I have been up and down Central From White Plains to Yonkers and up and down West Hartsdale Ave.

I have seen some trees removed but nothing indicating that I or my neighbors may get their power and HEAT back anytime soon!

valhallavoice:

Con ed is a government sanctioned monopoly that can't service its service area. I agree with others here that there is no evidence that any work is being done in Mt Pleasant. There are trucks clearing roadside debris, leaves and chipping branches, while huge trees (that the town should have removed long ago) sit on wires and houses through out the town. Meanwhile we are told that government buildings and schools are a priority. The taxpayers who pay their own bills and who pay the government bills too should come first.

sysmg:

I understand all the ConEd workers were pulled into Manhattan...

jcurtis:

Thanks for commenting, sysmg. To the best of my understanding, Con Ed utility crews are working throughout NYC and Westchester County. I will add to the article if I learn any new information.

Julie

adam.j.chill:

And where are our elected officials "officially" and publicly yelling and screaming at Con Ed? Not happening in New Rochelle.

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