Unitil Corporation, (www.unitil.com), a provider of natural gas and electricity to customers in New England, saw no icing issues in its service territory during the overnight hours, but the potential for hazard level icing remains in place through early Monday morning.
According to the most recent forecasts, 0.1-0.2 inches of ice accretion are still possible throughout Unitil’s electric service territories in New Hampshire Sunday night and into Monday. While the most serious icing is expected to occur north of Unitil’s service territory, emergency response personnel plan to continue to monitor the storm and are prepared to escalate if necessary.
“Small fluctuations in the at-ground temperature can have a profound effect on the volume of ice accretion,” Unitil Media Relations Manager Alec O’Meara said. “With the roads icy, motor vehicle accidents also have the potential to damage equipment and cause outages. We must continue to monitor the forecast, and we will be prepared to escalate if necessary.”
Currently, Unitil has reached out to third party contractors and secured 70 Tree and Line crews plus additional support staff to provide assistance should the need arise. Unitil staff will continue to closely monitor the forecast and will be prepared to escalate its response if warranted.
Unitil will be communicating throughout the restoration through Public Service Announcements (PSAs), our website, our customer call center and through the media. We also encourage customers to follow along with our storm updates via our Twitter feed (@Unitil), Facebook and will be providing real-time outage information online at http://www.unitil.com/map.
We recommend our customers remain similarly prepared by checking and making an inventory of the following items:
- Flashlights and fresh batteries
- A battery-operated radio and clock
- Bottled water, canned foods and a manual can opener
- A list of important phone numbers and a car charger for cell phones if applicable
- A first aid kit.
In the event of downed wires, assume all cables and wires that have fallen or dangling are energized and stay away. Be sure to avoid wet ground or puddles near a downed lined because water conducts electricity. In addition, keep away from all flooded and debris laden areas because they may be hiding downed lines. Stay in a safe place and avoid driving in damaged areas so you don’t interfere with rescue and restoration efforts.
IMPORTANT NOTE FOR MEDIA: Unitil asks that when reporting outage information, outlets time stamp the information. Outage numbers change hourly and we wish to make sure the information customers receive is consistent and understandable. Re-Tweets and re-posting of old information without referencing a time can create confusion.
Customers experiencing outages should call the following toll-free numbers:
- For the NH Seacoast Area: 1-800-582-7276
- For the NH Capital Area: 1-800-852-3339
- For Massachusetts: 1-888-301-7700
You can also report outages online at http://www.unitil.com/report-outage.