Manchester, NH (October 26, 2012) Weather forecasts continue to indicate that New Hampshire will see damaging winds and rain associated with Hurricane Sandy early next week. Public Service of New Hampshire (PSNH) is preparing for the likelihood of power outages resulting from the storm, and the utility is reminding customers of what they can and should be doing.
The company on Friday made calls to its customers who are on medical support devices, or are otherwise especially vulnerable when power outages occur, reminding them of how to plan and prepare for an outage, and what to do should an outage occur. Similar calls to all PSNH customers will be made over the weekend.
Be prepared – While electric utilities like PSNH work around-the-clock to restore service when power outages occur, it is also important that families and individuals consider how they will respond, especially in the event of a major event that lasts for several days. Customers should take advantage of this coming weekend to obtain useful supplies, including fresh fuel for emergency generators. A list of preparedness tips and reminders is posted at www.psnh.com and at www.nh.gov/readynh/.
Generator safety - Back-up/emergency generators can be very useful around your home or business. But, it’s critical to your safety and the safety of others, including PSNH electrical crews, that they be installed and operated properly. Guidelines are posted on the Safety section of our website.
What to expect - The level of damage to the Granite State from Hurricane Sandy will depend on where the storm strikes land, and PSNH will be closely monitoring its track over the weekend. “We expect that we could have heavy winds and rain, beginning very late Sunday or into Monday,” noted David Bickford, PSNH Director – Customer Operations. “It appears this could be a prolonged event, perhaps lasting into Tuesday. We will begin the restoration process, should outages occur, as soon as it is safe to do so.”
In addition to its own crews, PSNH has secured a number of local contractor crews, and is working to retain additional line workers and support staff. The company has 100 tree trimming crews who will be pre-staged at work centers around the state, in order to begin work as soon as needed.
PSNH is a participant in regional utility mutual aid groups, which work to coordinate assistance when a significant event impacts a widespread region. Independent contractors are also utilized when large power outages occur, but their availability is often uncertain until a storm passes and the full extent and breadth of damage is understood. How many crews will be available to help, where they come from - and when, will be dictated by what damage Hurricane Sandy actually causes – and where help is needed the most.
Staying Informed – During major power restoration efforts, PSNH uses a variety of communication tools to keep the public informed. Customers can follow PSNH on Twitter @psnh or on Facebook for real time updates. PSNH also uses a news blog, www.psnhnews.com, to post press releases, outage updates, and other important storm related information. Customers can also access PSNH’s outage map to see up to date outage information about their community
|Martin Murray||Manager - Media Relations|
PSNH is New Hampshire's largest electric utility, serving more than 500,000 homes and businesses in 211 cities and towns. PSNH is a Northeast Utilities company (NYSE:NU).