NYSEG and RG&E Restore Power To More Than 170,000 Customers Affected By Wind Storm

  • Stay away from downed power lines.
  • Even lines that appear dead can be deadly.
  • NYSEG customers should call 800.572.1131 to report downed power lines or other hazardous situations;
  • RG&E customers should call 800.743.1701.

Binghamton & Rochester, NY - March 12, 2017 - NYSEG and RG&E, subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc. (NYSE: AGR), are entering the third day of restoration following a wind storm that brought widespread damage across western New York last Wednesday and Thursday. As of noon, approximately 30,000 RG&E customers are without power, more than 9,000 of whom lost power in the days following the storm. RG&E expects to restore power to the majority of the customers affected by the storm by midnight tonight, and complete the restoration for the remaining customers by Tuesday. Fewer than 2,000 NYSEG customers affected by the storm remain without power. NYSEG expects to restore service to nearly all of those customers by Sunday night.

NYSEG and RG&E have mobilized more than 2,900 line and forestry personnel from around the state as well as crews from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Virginia, and the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick, Ontario, and Quebec. At present, the companies have secured all the resources we need to complete this restoration with the assistance of the Governor’s office, the Public Service Commission, and our local partners.

Wednesday and Thursday resulted in more than 200,000 homes and business without power and brought reports of more than 4,000 downed wires across both companies.

The following areas are distribution sites for dry ice and water. Supplies are distributed on a first come, first served basis, until they run out.  


County           Town  Location  Times
 Monroe  Brighton  The Brighton Fire Dept. #1
 3100 East Ave (corner of East Ave & Rt 441)
 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday 3/12
       Open 24/7
       8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 3/12
       Closes at 3 p.m., Sunday 3/12
 Wayne  Walworth  Walworth Fire Department, 2178 Church Street   On-going
 Erie  East Aurora  Town Park, 690 South Street   7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday 3/12

Customers can get the latest outage counts; outage locations by county, municipality and streets/roads; and estimated restoration times (as they are available) on the companies’ websites:  NYSEG Outage informaton or   List of Electricity Outages. Estimated times for restoration may also change if continuing stormy weather delays progress or causes further outages.

NYSEG and RG&E also encourage customers to sign up for Outage Alerts to receive updates throughout the day automatically by phone, text, or e-mail as the companies updates the status of the restoration process in their area. Customers can sign up by visiting the NYSEG website at NYSEG Outage alert or at the RG&E website at Outage Alerts.

Power Restoration Priorities

Our first priority is responding to known incidents of downed power lines to make the situations safe. Once this vital public safety work is complete, the company will:

  • Assess the damage to the electricity delivery system.
  • Develop a detailed restoration plan.
  • Make repairs as quickly as possible.

How We Go About Restoring Power Following Major Storms

We first repair the backbone of the electricity system - transmission lines and substations - that bring electricity to the local distribution system that serves our customers. We then make any necessary repairs to the distribution system that includes the poles and power lines along streets and roads, focusing first on those circuits where we can restore power to the largest number of customers. As part of this process, we take into account the needs of hospitals, nursing homes, fire and police stations, as well as any other critical infrastructure. This is a time-proven process that ensures we safely restore service as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Customers should remember these tips:

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.
  • To report a power interruption, contact NYSEG at 800.572.1131 or RG&E at 800.743.1701. Our telephone systems let callers report the problem, help our crews respond quickly and efficiently, and provide 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 or mobile device during a power interruption can also report the interruption online at nyseg.com or rge.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.
  • 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. Most food will last 24 hours if you minimize the opening of refrigerator and freezer doors.

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 your utility 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.
  • Additional storm safety information is available at nyseg.com or rge.com (click on “Outage Central” and then on “Storm Safety”).  

Media Contacts:
Juanita Washington