NYSEG Continues to Assess Widespread Damage and Repair Its Electricity Delivery System
Well Over Half of Total Service Interruptions Have Been Restored
>> Dry ice and bottled water locations: http://www.nyseg.com/Outages/default.html
>> NYSEG urges customers to stay away from downed power lines – even lines that appear dead can be deadly. NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131 to report downed power lines or other hazardous situations. NYSEG’s natural gas emergency number is 1.800.572.1121.
>> Emergency generators can be dangerous. Carefully read, understand and follow manufacturer’s instructions when operating an emergency generator. Never run emergency generators indoors; operate them only outdoors in well-ventilated areas and away from windows and doors.
>> For information on how flooding affects electricity and natural gas service: http://www.nyseg.com/OurCompany/News/2011/082811flooding.html
>> Outage information: http://www.nyseg.com/Outages/outageinformation.html
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>> >> The next news release will be distributed at 11 a.m.
Rochester, NY – Of the approximately 260,000 power interruptions thus far as a result of the devastating and widespread damage from Hurricane Irene, NYSEG has restored nearly 171,000 services. (In these figures, customers that have been interrupted and restored more than once are counted for each time they have been interrupted and restored.)
“We certainly understand how inconvenient and frustrating it is to be without power, and our people are doing their very best to restore service safely and as quickly as possible,” said Mark S. Lynch, president of NYSEG and RG&E. “Despite the considerable challenges posed by hazardous and challenging working conditions, we are making progress.”
NYSEG crews and support personnel continue to make conditions safe, assess damage and restore power. Helicopter patrols are being used as an efficient way to identify system damage and check the integrity of NYSEG’s vast infrastructure.
Based on the extent of the known damage thus far – including nearly 2,500 downed wires and almost 200 broken poles – NYSEG is prepared for a long duration power restoration effort and asks customers to do the same. While some customers will have power restored in the next few days – particularly in the Binghamton Division – it is likely that many customers will be without power at least into next week.
The company currently has more than 1,400 people dedicated to the massive power restoration effort, including NYSEG and Rochester Gas and Electric line crews, contract line and tree crews, damage assessors, wire guards, Incident Command Structure support staff and customer service representatives, many of whom are working around the clock. More than 400 line and tree crews are working together to restore power safely and as quickly as possible. NYSEG also continues to secure and deploy additional crews and other resources.
As estimated restoration times are available, they will be posted at http://www.nyseg.com/Outages/outageinformation.html.
Approximately 88,000 customers are currently without power. The largest concentrations of customers are:
• 36,500 in NYSEG’s Brewster Division (parts of Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess counties).
• 26,700 in NYSEG’s Oneonta Division (parts of Broome, Chenango, Delaware, Greene, Herkimer, Lewis, Madison, Oneida, Otsego, Schoharie and Ulster counties).
• 12,900 in NYSEG’s Plattsburgh Division (parts of Clinton, Essex, Franklin and Hamilton counties).
• 8,700 in NYSEG’s Liberty Division (parts of Sullivan, Orange, Delaware and Ulster counties).
• 3,100 in NYSEG’s Binghamton Division (all or parts of Broome, Tioga, Chenango and Cortland counties).
• Other outages are scattered across the NYSEG service area.
During a power interruption
• Contact neighbors to see if their power is off. A loss of power may be the result of a blown fuse or a tripped circuit breaker.
• Contact NYSEG (1.800.572.1131) to report a power interruption. Our telephone system lets callers report the problem, helps our crews respond quickly and efficiently, and provides customers with power interruption updates. Because many people may be trying to reach us during a power interruption, phone lines may be busy. Anyone who has access to a working computer during a power interruption can also report the interruption online at nyseg.com.
• Listen to a battery-powered radio for weather and power restoration updates.
• Turn off major appliances (electric water heaters, refrigerators and freezers) and sensitive electronic equipment (TVs, VCRs, DVD players, computers, audio equipment) to prevent overloading and possible damage when power is restored. Turning off this equipment may mean unplugging it, turning off a circuit breaker or removing a fuse for the circuit that provides power to this equipment. Leave one light switch “on” to know when power has been restored.
• Emergency generators can be dangerous. Carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Never run an emergency generator indoors; operate generators only outdoors in well-ventilated areas.
• Don’t use a natural gas or propane range to heat your home.
• Never use outdoor grills or stoves inside.
• Keep refrigerators and freezers closed as much as possible to prevent food from spoiling – most food will last 24 hours.
After power is restored
• If a basement or home was flooded, customers should have an electrician check the home and have a plumbing and heating contractor check natural gas appliances before contacting NYSEG to have services turned on.
• Turn on appliances and sensitive electronic equipment one at a time to avoid overloading circuits.
• Replenish emergency supplies used during the storm.
An example of the challenges NYSEG faces in restoring power, this one in the Town of North Salem in NYSEG’s Brewster Division.