GMP Crews Tackling Storm Damage; Most Customers Restored Overnight

20 July 2013

Rutland, VT… Green Mountain Power crews responded quickly to Friday’s damaging storm and made significant progress overnight restoring power to more than 8,000 customers. Customers were affected across the state, with intense winds, lightning and rain knocking down trees, poles and wires.

“Crews worked hard through the night tackling significant damage caused by intense weather,” said Dorothy Schnure, GMP’s corporate spokesperson. “We’ve brought in extra contract crews to support the state-wide restoration effort.”

Weather caused outages across the state, and areas hardest hit included Royalton, St. Johnsbury, St. Albans, Middlebury, Montpelier, Sunderland, and Springfield.

By 8 a.m. Saturday, 1,700 customers remained without power.  Restoration efforts will continue throughout the day with full restoration expected by late tonight or early Sunday. However, weather reports indicate the potential for more storms later today that could cause additional outages.

“We are at the stage now where restoring power to a single customer can involve hours of work removing fallen trees and replacing broken poles,” said Schnure. “We appreciate our customers’ patience while we repair a significant amount of damage.”

“Safety is always a top priority when storms bring down power lines,” said Schnure. “You cannot tell if a line is energized and dangerous by looking at it, so if you see a line down, keep children and pets well away from it until GMP crews arrive on the scene.”

Customers may report outages by calling 1-888-835-4672, visiting GMP’s Outage Center page at www.greenmountainpower.com or mobile enhanced at m.greenmountainpower.com, or by clicking the “Power Out?” button on GMP’s Facebook site.
GMP offered several safety tips for coping with outages:
* STAY AWAY FROM DOWNED POWER LINES. Don't touch or even go near downed wires! These wires can be energized and can cause serious injuries or death. If the line is blocking the road or in contact with a vehicle with people inside, call your local police or fire emergency number first. Then call GMP. Instruct others to keep at least 50 feet away, and keep pets and livestock away as well.
* Assume all objects touching the power line are also energized. Never attempt to remove trees or limbs from any utility lines! Notify GMP of the situation.
* If using a generator, read and follow the owner's manual before starting the generator. Never operate a generator inside any structure or near a structure. Use a transfer switch to ensure electricity is not accidentally fed onto a line where line crews must work.
* Keep freezers and refrigerators closed as much as possible to prevent food spoilage.
* If power goes out, turn off all electrical appliances except one light so you'll know when service returns. Then, turn equipment back on slowly.

About Green Mountain Power
Green Mountain Power (www.greenmountainpower.com) generates, transmits, distributes and sells electricity in the state of Vermont. The company, which serves more than 250,000 customers, has set its vision to be the best small utility in America.  

 Media Contact: Dorothy Schnure, Corporate Spokesperson, cell: 802-324-4418