Power Outages Reduced, But Some Residents Face Second Day Without Electricity

Mar 12, 2018

As of Wednesday morning, National Grid had restored to power to many customers in Rhode Island and the South Coast who lost it during the storm. After a high of more than 27,000 homes and businesses in the dark, the utility reported just 4,439 still lacked power in Rhode Island by 10 a.m.

The utility said it had hundreds of crews working overnight and hoped to get all power restored by 11 p.m.

"Responding to police and fire requests of downed wires is our number one priority before we can proceed with damage assessment and restoration," read a statement on National Grid's power outage map.

In Massachusetts, Eversource was reporting more than 1,000 customer outages in Dartmouth, Westport and New Bedford. Some of the hardest hit areas of Cape Cod and Plymouth still had many thousands of homes and businesses without power.

National Grid Reports Thousands Without Power As Storm Tapers

Nearly 13,000 National Grid customers around Rhode Island were without power Tuesday evening as truck operators from as far away as Ontario, Canada worked with power company employees to restore service.

Washington County was hid hardest, with more than 6,200 customers without power as of 7:25  p.m., followed by Kent County, with more than 3,400 customers without power, including nearly 2,400 in Warwick.  In Hopkinton and Exeter – where well water pumps can’t operate without electricity – another 3,440 customers also lost power.  

National Grid is reporting power will be restored by 11 p.m. Wednesday. 

In Massachusetts, nearly 32,000 customers lost power, including more than 15,000 in Plymouth County, the area that took the biggest hit.  As of 6 p.m., National Grid had not yet reported when power would be restored for Plymouth.

The National Weather Service reports snow showers ending before midnight or 1 a.m., possibly adding another inch of snow. On Wednesday, the forecast calls for scattered snow showers before 4 p.m., then turning to rain after 5 p.m.

You can use this interactive map to get the latest updates on National Grid's progress restoring power.

Earlier Tuesday, National Grid said hundreds of crews were bracing for potential power outages caused by the snowstorm - the third nor'easter of this month. 

The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning starting at 11 p.m. Monday to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Forecasters were predicting 12 to 18 inches of snowfall for Rhode Island and the South Coast. 

National Grid said more than 500 line crews and nearly 300 tree crews would be at the ready for Rhode Island and Massachusetts to restore lost power.

"That sheer volume of line crews that we have in the area right now is helping us to remain confident in what we can achieve," Tim Rondeau, spokesman for National Grid, said.

Rondeau said the utility is also prepared to rearrange the crews depending on where they're needed.

 

"If, say, Rhode Island were to be impacted more than Massachusetts and we saw the need to reallocate those line and tree crews, we would be able to do that pretty seamlessly," Rondeau said.

 

However, Rondeau said crews cannot go out to power lines immediately if wind gusts are more than 35 miles an hour. 

 

Rhode Island state lawmakers have criticized the utility for leaving customers without power for days after the most recent storm, and have introduced legislation to improve National Grid's response time. 

 

Customers can report outages to National Grid online or by calling 1-800-465-1212. 

updated 7:26 p.m.