CL&P Switching Into 'Full Restoration Mode'

The utility says it's making 'excellent progress,' but 320,000 customers are still without power.


CL&P says it has almost completed its damage assessments and has made substantial progress in clearing roads, which allows it to transition fully into "restoration mode" on Thursday.

William Quinlan, a utility vice president, said at a 4 p.m. briefing Wednesday that by Thursday morning he would have an estimate for when the vast majority of customers would get their power back.

"We continue to make excellent progress," Quinlan said, adding that the priority will be restoring critical facilities such as hospitals, police stations, fire stations and water treatment plants. About 500 such facilities still don't have power, he said.

In addition, Quinlan said, the company has firm commitments from 300 additional line workers and 250 additional tree workers and hopes to put them in the field tomorrow. That would bring the total number of out-of-state line workers — in addition to the 400 employed by CL&P — to 1380. The total number of called-in tree workers — in addition to about 300 in state who work regularly with CL&P — would go up to 888, he said.

Quinlan said the company had shifted its strategy from last year, when 800,000 customers lost power after a rare October snowstorm. It now considers clearing downed wires the highest priority.

"The reason we're focused on downed wires," he said, "is that they present a public health and safety risk."

Quinlan said there were a "substantial number of resources" in both the southwestern and southeastern corners of the state, where the most residents have lost power.

About 350,000 customers have had power restored since the storm began, but 320,000 customers were still in the dark on Wednesday afternoon.


Concerned Citizen October 31, 2012 at 10:59 PM
Why has that tree on Tokeneke road near Colangelo not been cut down? It's a huge hazard and has been there for 2 days!!!
victor October 31, 2012 at 11:31 PM
Lets hope this spokesman's optimism translates into effective action as opposed to silence and mediocre service the last few times we needed them
Thomas Crafts November 01, 2012 at 11:30 AM
The plan sucks...AGAIN!
Joe Pankowski November 01, 2012 at 12:40 PM
...the complaining I'm hearing in-person and reading on-line over the power situation is really over-the-top. Good Lord, people. You've lost power for a couple of days and all hell's breaking loose. Given the historic nature of the storm and the fact that hundreds of communities are in the same boat, we're seeing solid progress in Fairfield County. I don't have power yet, but as a native of North Florida who has been through a fair share of hurricanes, I know these things take time. Everybody needs to chill. We'll get through this.
Marta Lewis November 01, 2012 at 12:53 PM
I agree with Mr. Pankowski! The complainers must be the ones that have 'never' lived in the Caribbean or hurricane prone areas. This is just a few days without power -- for those that have lost it all, it will be much longer. Count your blessings. Marta Lewis
Jean Bollman November 01, 2012 at 01:04 PM
That tree is dangerous. But so are the ones on Sedgewick, Mansfield (HWY 124) in at least 3 places, Brookside, Talmadge Hill, all over Tokeneke....all with wires down. I know the crews are working early and late and first require an electrical team to confirm the wires are not live and then, because they are very large, it requires a whole crew, not one guy with a chainsaw. It is only Thursday...day 3 after the storm. Patience is required.


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