Governor, Power Companies Urge Residents to Be Prepared for Blizzard

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The governor and power company officials are urging residents to be prepared for the possible blizzard approaching.

"Although storms can be unpredictable, this storm has the potential to have a significant impact on the state and we need to be prepared," Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said in a written statement. "Just as the state is monitoring and preparing, the public should do the same."

Connecticut Light and Power also is warning residents to be prepared in the event of "prolonged outages" due to the blizzard and the possibility that massive amounts of snow and high winds could knock trees and branches onto the power lines.

In 2011, CL&P was under fire after a snowstorm in October caused statewide power outages, some lasting as long as a week and a half. The power company underwent a change in leadership soon after.

CL&P employs 400 line workers, but the power company is also calling in outside crews before the storm hits, according to a news release. The power company is also ensuring that its vehicles are ready to brave potentially slippery roads during the blizzard and placing "employees and materials in locations across the state," CL&P officials said. 

United Illuminating Company is also getting crews ready for the blizzard.

“We’ve been tracking this storm closely since late last week, and making sure our crews and equipment are ready and appropriately positioned to respond quickly and effectively,” James P. Torgerson, United Illuminating's president and chief executive officer, said. “As always, we are preparing for the worst and hoping for the best.”

Norwich Public Utilities is well-prepared for the storm, positioning equipment and personnel to respond to any emergency, according to a statement released.

The state Department of Transportation is getting its "entire fleet of snow plows, including 12 loader-mounted snow blowers" ready to clear the roads, the governor's office said, as the state prepares for about 18 to 30 inches of snow. Treatment on the roads from the weekend snowstorm should help "pretreat the roads" as the potential blizzard rolls in Monday.

CL&P customers can report power outages to 1-800-286-2000 or through the mobile website. United Illuminating customers can test "REG" to 839-884 for alerts about outages and call 1-800-722-5584 to report downed power lines.

Dora B. Schriro, commissioner of the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DEMHS), said that emergency services officials are "monitoring this storm very closely" and "prepared to coordinate any potential state response."

DEMHS will have conference calls with the National Weather Service to stay updated on the storm, according to Malloy's office . The governor plans on providing updates on weather conditions to the state.

The governor's office also encourages residents to have emergency kits ready just in case that contain the following items:

  • 1 gallon of bottled water per person for at least three days for drinking and washing.
  • Non-perishable food for residents and pets to last three days.
  • Prescription medication to last three days.
  • A radio that's battery-powered or that you can crank by hand or a NOAA Weather Radio that has a tone alert, as well as extra batteries for each.
  • A flashlight and additional batteries.
  • A first aid kit.
  • An emergency whistle.
  • Towelettes that are moist.
  • Plastic trash bags with ties.
  • A wrench or pliers you can use to shut off utilities.
  • A can opener that works manually.
  • Maps.
  • Any cell phones and charges, as well as inverters or solar chargers.
  • Additional fuel for your generator.
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