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NYSEG, RG&E continue response effort as strong winds impacted service areas overnight & during early morning hours


Mon, Nov 16th 2020 09:45 am

Crews today will continue to make safe downed wires and trees, perform restoration work, conduct full damage assessment

NYSEG and RG&E crews are responding as strong winds and thunderstorms continue to disrupt service to thousands of customers across the state. Currently, there are 20,321 NYSEG customers and 529 RG&E customers without power of the approximately 54,000 and 22,000 impacted respectively. The hardest hit areas include NYSEG’s Lancaster (12,924 customers) and Brewster (5,348) divisions. These impacted areas include Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Dutchess, Putnam and Westchester counties.

The weather event brought strong winds and thunderstorms across the state Sunday morning and continued overnight. It remains active in portions of the service area. Crews worked through the overnight to clear downed wires and trees, make safe work sites, and restore power to impacted customers.

The strong winds remaining active during the overnight period prevented crews from performing certain restoration work, such as using bucket trucks to access the top of the utility poles. However, crews were able to perform critical restoration work, such as replacing broken poles, and readying the site with new equipment for when the wind speeds slowed, and the work could be safely performed.

Daily Work Plan

Today, the company will conduct damage assessments and identify the extent of the damage caused by the weather event, and crews will continue to make safe roads, and clear debris, fallen trees or other hazards. Crews were repositioned throughout the state overnight to be able to perform work in the most significantly impacted areas.

The company continues to coordinate its response effort with state and local emergency management officials to clear roads of fallen trees and hazards and restore power service to critical facilities, such as hospitals and nursing homes.

Safety Tips

The companies also remind the public to stay away from downed wires and report any downed wires to NYSEG at 1-800-572-1131 or RG&E at 1-800-743-1701. Customers should not attempt to move wires or fallen trees until the area is deemed safe by professionals. It is possible that a live wire be tangled into a fallen tree, which could injure someone trying to remove the fallen debris.

Recognizing many residents are currently home due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, for everyone’s safety, the company asks customers to observe a 6-foot social distance if they must be near workers and always remain outside the work zone. Allowing crews to remain uninterrupted and focused on their work enables workers to determine damage and make repairs more quickly.

NYSEG and RG&E will continue to provide updates throughout the event to the general public on the companies’ social media channels (Facebook and Twitter). The companies also offer customers the following reminders to prepare for the storm and stay safe if power outages do occur:

Outage Information

Sign up for outage alerts to receive updates automatically by phone, text or email as the company updates the status of the restoration process in their area. Customers can sign up for outage alerts by visiting here for NYSEG and here for RG&E.

One can use the new mobile app to report and check the status of outages. To download the application, customers should search “AVANGRID” in the Apple or Android app stores and select “NYSEG” or “RG&E.” The application is free to download. 

Stay Away From Downed Wires

√ Stay at least 30 feet from a downed power line.

√ If a downed wire comes in contact with your vehicle, stay inside and wait for help. If you must get out because of fire or other danger, jump clear of the vehicle to avoid any contact with the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Land with your feet together and hop with feet together or shuffle away; don’t run or stride.

√ NYSEG customers should call 1-800-572-1131 and RG&E customers should call 1-800-743-1701 to report downed power lines or other hazardous situations.

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 1-800-572-1131 or RG&E at 1-800-743-1701.

√ 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.

Power Restoration Priorities

The companies’ first priorities are to respond to reports of downed power lines to keep the public safe. NYSEG customers are asked to call 1-800-572-1131 and RG&E customers are asked to call at 1-800-743-1701 to report downed wires. 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.

For additional information, including storm preparation tips, storm safety information, generator safety information, restoration priorities and emergency resources, visit “Outage Central” at www.NYSEG.com or www.RGE.com and on the company’s social media pages:

  • Facebook: @NYSEandG
  • Twitter: @NYSEandG
  • Facebook: @RochGandE
  • Twitter: @RGandE

NYSEG and RG&E are subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc.

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