High School Opening Could Be Delayed; Community Hurricane Center Still Open

by LonSeidman

The first day of school is Wednesday, but Wolcott High School students may get one more summer day off. Wolcott School superintendent Joseph Macary has informed the Whisper that power has been out since Hurricane Irene rolled through Connecticut. “We know where the tree branch came down, but it’s just a matter of CL&P of fixing it.” Macary says that a determination of whether or not to open school will be made closer to the opening period tomorrow morning, as the electricity could be restored at almost any time.

Classes will start at the other four town schools on schedule. “We’ve had no other problems other than some minor leaks that were cleaned up the next day,” Macary reports on any storm related damage. Attempts to pull up the School system’s website are currently unsuccessful because servers for the school system’s website and e-mail system are housed at the High School.

CL&P has been making steady progress in restoring power both in Wolcott and across Connecticut. Company spokesman Al Lara says that “Wolcott currently has 405 or 5% of its customers still without power. That’s down from the 1043 customers without power at the height of the storm on Sunday and 538 as of 6:30 pm on Monday. The High School should be a priority, because we’ve been working on getting as many of the schools up as possible (for the first day of school),” he said at 2:30 pm Tuesday.

Click this link to see the CL&P outage map.

Elsewhere around the area, Watertown and Waterbury have large areas without power. “Your town seems to just have small pockets left” says Lara. “I would expect most of Wolcott should be back up by the end of the day tomorrow”.

“We’ve restored over 392,000 customers across Connecticut in the 36 hours since the storm. That includes some customers that have gone out more than once. That’s a record for us in terms of restoration” A news release by the company says that line crews are working 16 hour shifts beginning at 7 am so that they can make the maximum use of daylight sunlight. 75% of crews work at that time, and another 25% start at 3 pm. Assistance has been coming in from Canada to Alabama.

On Monday morning, one such crew of a CL&P truck followed by a tree trimming crew from New York slowly drove up Brookdale St. to search for the cause of an outage affecting that road. Its radio crackled with a number of streets including Diamond Rock Dr. from other crews in town. The CL&P driver of the truck refused to stop to answer questions from a reporter “We gotta keep moving and working” he said, focused on the large task at hand. Fifteen minutes after he went back up the road, power was restored to the neighborhood. A branch had fallen on a juncture of lines at the corner of Frances Dr. and Chase Rd. that plunged those streets into darkness since about 3:30 Sunday morning.

Reports around town say that two elderly apartment buildings on Edgemont Lane are still without power. Many of those residents are going to the Town’s Hurricane Center at the Senior Center which has had continuous power since the storm. Hot meals are available for breakfast and lunch. If a resident is homebound and cannot make it to the Center, they should contact Darlene Tynan at (203) 879-8100 or the Senior Center at (203) 879-8133.

Center director Donna Belmal reports that only one family and one individual used the center on Sunday, but on monday more arrived and fifteen people used the resources at the facility on Monday. “Any resident who needs a break is welcome to come down and stay awhile. We have computers and internet residents can use. We’ve actually been having a pleasant time meeting new people we otherwise wouldn’t, because of the circumstances.” Belmal stressed that the senior center isn’t just for seniors, and that any resident should come down, especially if they are affected the storm.

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