More than 460 distribution crews in the field today following destruction from Winter Storm Riley
March 4, 2018
WALTHAM, MA – More than 460 distribution crews have been working throughout Massachusetts today to restore power to customers affected by the devastation left by Winter Storm Riley. While restoration efforts continue, power has been restored to more than 153,000 customers in Massachusetts, down from a peak of 241,400.
“We thank customers for their continued support and understanding as our crews work to repair widespread damage to our infrastructure,” said Cordi O’Hara, president and COO of National Grid in Massachusetts. “Given the magnitude of the storm and the level of destruction, this has been a very labor-intensive effort to restore power, and we are working as quickly and as safely as we can.”
Winter Storm Riley left behind hundreds of downed power lines, broken utility poles, and uprooted trees, as well as significant damage caused by flooding. Following yesterday’s focus on prioritizing public safety, including addressing wires down and responding to emergencies, National Grid has been in full-scale restoration mode today and will continue until all customers are restored. Crews have faced challenging conditions in responding to this storm due to extreme winds and flooding that lingered into Saturday, even as the storm traveled out to sea.
National Grid has been tackling multiple paths of restoration. With a new school week approaching, restoring power to schools has been a key priority. The company also continues to focus on the hardest-hit areas of Southeastern Massachusetts and the South Shore, working to restore substations, main feeder lines, and critical customers, such as hospitals. This work is happening in parallel with restoring individual customers. Though National Grid cautions that some of the hardest hit customers may continue to be without power into Tuesday, the company continues to refine estimated restoration times by area and expects the number of total outages to decline significantly before then.
Check or Report on an Outage:
Customers can check or report a power outage in three ways:
- Log into the report/check outage page on National Grid’s website. This is the best way for customers to check the estimated restoration time for their specific address.
- Go to the National Grid app and click on “report outage.” (Our free mobile app is available from the iTunes and GooglePlay stores.)
- Call 1-800-465-1212.
Safety is a Priority:
We urge customers to watch out for their own wellbeing and the safety of utility crews working during the storm. Here are some tips to help keep everyone safe:
- If you use a generator to supply power during an outage, be sure to operate it outdoors. Before operating generators, disconnect from National Grid’s system by shutting off the main breaker located in the electric service panel. Failure to do this could jeopardize the safety of line crews and the public.
- Never touch downed power lines, and always assume that any fallen lines are live electric wires. If you see one, report it immediately to National Grid or your local emergency response organization.
- Power problems can sometimes interrupt public water supply systems or disable well pumps, so it’s an especially good idea to keep a supply of bottled drinking water handy, as well as some canned food.
- People who depend on electric-powered life support equipment, such as a respirator, should let National Grid know. To register as a life support customer, call the company’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-322-3223.
- Check on elderly family members, neighbors and others who may need assistance during an outage period.
If you lose power, turn off any appliances that were on when the power went off, but leave one light on so you will know when power is restored.