SPRINGFIELD, Mass., June 2, 2011 – Crews from Western Massachusetts Electric Company (WMECo), its sister utilities and contractors are fully engaged with efforts to restore power to areas of the City damaged by Wednesday’s tornado and intense thunderstorms.
In their path, the tornado and storm left behind fallen trees, utility poles and power lines. More than 17,000 Western Massachusetts Electric Company (WMECo) customers have lost power as a result. Outages were prevalent throughout WMECo’s service territory, with Berkshire County and Hampden County hardest hit. Most customers in Berkshire County and other parts of the territory had electric service restored by late Wednesday evening.
Crews worked through the night to assess damage, clear trees from power lines and de-energize downed lines in the damaged areas of the City. The most severe damage occurred in the Sixteen Acres and East Forest Park neighborhoods of the City. More than 80 utility poles were damaged or broken in the storm. Many City streets remain impassable.
More than 100 crews and support personnel will be working today to assess the damage and begin the task of rebuilding the electric system.
“This is not just a restoration effort. The electric system in many of these neighborhoods will need to be completely rebuilt,” said Peter Clarke, WMECo president and chief operating officer.
“This is a formidable task that will take several days to complete. We understand how difficult this is on our customers and appreciate their patience during this difficult time. We are marshalling every available resource to get the power restored as quickly and safely as possible,” Clarke said.
Customers should report power outages to 781-4300 (within the Springfield area) or (877) OK-WMECO (877) 659-6326.
Please help us convey the following important safety messages to our customers:
|Western Massachusetts Electric Company, a Northeast Utilities company (NYSE:NU), serves approximately 210,000 customers in 59 communities throughout western Massachusetts and is committed to the environment, economic development and the health of the communities it serves. For more information, please visit our Web site: www.wmeco.com. |