Unitil, (unitil.com), a provider of natural gas and electricity to customers in New England, responded to multiple power outages caused by today’s strong winter storm that impacted its service territories.
High winds associated with the storm were concentrated in the New Hampshire Seacoast region and resulted in a peak of approximately 2,800 customers without power.
"Our crews have worked throughout the morning to assess the damage while working closely with first responders to address any safety concerns. The storm appears to have evolved as expected with snow changing to rain fairly quickly in coastal areas."
Media Relations Manager, Alec O'Meara
As of 12:30 p.m., Unitil had under 100 customers still without power.
Crews are continuing to work to bring the remaining customers affected by the storm back online. While the worst of the winds occurred during the morning hours, some gusty conditions are forecasted to continue into the afternoon and could result in additional outages.
Estimated restoration times for individual outages are available on Unitil’s outage map at Unitil.com/map.
Heavy snow began falling in the early morning hours and quickly transitioned to rain along the coast. While winds were forecasted to be lighter away from the coast, the changeover from snow to rain made the consistency more heavy and wet, which created the potential for some outages in interior sections.
“Our crews have worked throughout the morning to assess the damage while working closely with first responders to address any safety concerns. The storm appears to have evolved as expected with snow changing to rain fairly quickly in coastal areas. The focus will remain on the wind gusts through the afternoon and the potential for additional outages, although it appears that the most hazardous conditions have passed,” said Unitil Media Relations Manager Alec O’Meara.
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.