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Heavy rain, wind gusts approaching 50 mph possible as Isaias passes though region tonight
August 4, 2020
Hampton, NH

Unitil Corporation, (unitil.com), a provider of natural gas and electricity to customers in New England, is currently expecting the peak impacts from Tropical Storm Isaias late this afternoon and into this evening.

According to the most recent forecasts, Isaias is expected to be a rapidly moving tropical storm as it passes the region Tuesday night, with heavy rain and wind gusts of up to 40-50 mph possible in all areas and possibly up to 55 mph in immediate coastal areas as it passes. The potential for isolated tornadoes exists as well during the late afternoon hours as part of the initial bands of thunderstorms. Such wind gusts, should they manifest, have the potential to take down branches and upend trees, causing damage to electric infrastructure. Sustained winds approaching 30 mph are also possible tonight, which would slow restoration efforts.

As winds approach 30 mph, bucket trucks are unable to safely extend their arms, which prevents some types of restoration efforts. Crews will be restoring power where possible during the peak hours, but we expect our primary focus will be on working with first responders to address wires down issues and other public safety concerns.

Media Relations Manager, Alec O’Meara

In light of the ongoing concerns regarding COVID 19, Unitil proactively secured additional third party crews to bolster resources at the start of the pandemic, and has kept personnel working remotely wherever possible to protect the overall health of employees. Unitil has since secured additional crews as part of its response plan and is prepared to open its Emergency Operations Center should conditions escalate further.

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.

The windy conditions have the potential to take wires to the ground. 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.

Unitil will be communicating throughout the event 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 Facebook, our Twitter feed (@Unitil) and we will be providing real-time outage information online at unitil.com/map.

 

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 1-888-301-7700.

You can also report outages online at unitil.com/report-outage.

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About Unitil Corporation

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering natural gas and electricity in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 106,000 electric customers and 83,600 natural gas customers. For more information about our people, technologies, and community involvement please visit https://unitil.com.


For more information please contact:
Alec O'Meara

Media Relations Manager
OMeara@unitil.com
Phone: 603-773-6404

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