Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp. continues to make significant progress in restoring electricity to customers who were impacted by a series of isolated, but very powerful and severe thunderstorms that ripped through the Mid-Hudson Valley on Tuesday and Wednesday. The most recent round of storms on Wednesday evening interrupted service to more than 6,800 homes and businesses. In all, more than 35,000 customers were impacted since the start of the storms on Tuesday afternoon. As of 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, approximately 6,500 customers are without power, the majority in Ulster, Dutchess and Greene counties.
“We continue to have our full complement of more than 340 line and tree professionals, along with hundreds of employees working in support roles day and night to restore power to our customers as safely and efficiently as possible,” said Ryan Hawthorne, Vice President of Electric Engineering and Operations. “In addition to our existing workforce, an additional 48 line workers have arrived from Canada to help us with our efforts.”
Storms began impacting Central Hudson’s service area on Tuesday afternoon and evening when 70 mile per hour winds, large hail and frequent lightning strikes interrupted service to thousands of customers in southern Ulster, central Dutchess and Orange counties. While restoration efforts were ongoing in those areas, a second severe storm cell moved through portions of Greene and Albany counties on Wednesday afternoon causing trees to fall and bringing powerlines down with them. A state of emergency was declared in the Village of Coxsackie as a result of those storms. An additional wave of strong thunderstorms impacted homes and businesses in Ulster and Dutchess counties late Wednesday night once again.
Central Hudson expects to complete restoration in Dutchess County by Thursday night. The majority of customers in Ulster and Greene counties should also have power restored by Thursday night, with some outages in the most heavily impacted areas lingering into Friday morning. The current forecast calls for the potential for additional thunderstorms on Thursday afternoon that could slow restoration work and create additional outages.
“These powerful storms have come in waves and left significant damage in their wake. We know how critical it is to restore service to our customers and we appreciate their patience as we continue to make progress. I’d also like to thank all of the state, county and local responders who have helped us by assisting with cleanup efforts and by keeping our communities safe,” Hawthorne added.
Dry ice and bottled water will be distributed at the Poughkeepsie Home Depot, located at 3470 North Rd., Poughkeepsie starting at 10 a.m.
Residents are advised to exercise an abundance of caution around downed power lines by staying at least 30 feet away, and remember that downed lines can become entangled and hidden in fallen limbs. Residents should also remember to assume any downed power lines are live.
Extreme heat poses an added risk to our most vulnerable customers. Central Hudson continues to partner with our local officials and first responders in order to ensure our elderly and infirm customers remain safe. Residents are reminded to check in on their neighbors as well.
Customers are advised to keep safety in mind, particularly during power interruptions:
- Never use outdoor gas or charcoal grills indoors, as they pose a fire hazard and over time can give off carbon monoxide gas;
- Beware of fallen trees and limbs, and use caution when traveling;
- Avoid the use of candles for illumination due to fire hazards;
- Follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions on the use of emergency generators, and be sure to shut off the main breaker when in use and operate the units outdoors;
- Operate cars and motor vehicles outdoors only, and never inside the garage; and
- Avoid travel along roadways as hazardous conditions may cause driving accidents, including those involving utility poles which may cause power interruptions.
- Visit hudsonvalleyweather.com for the latest forecast information.
Customers can stay informed of storm and restoration conditions in the following ways:
- By text messaging: Customers should enroll in Central Hudson’s Texting Program to use text messaging to report their power condition and to obtain repair status. To enroll, visit CentralHudson.com/Alerts or text REG to 236483;
- On the Web: Visit CentralHudson.com/Storms to report outages and obtain restoration updates;
- Via smart phones: A mobile version of the Central Hudson’s website can be accessed by web-enabled cell phones and mobile devices at https://mobile.CenHud.com. Updated free Central Hudson mobile applications are available for Android and Apple devices by logging onto www.cenhud.com/mobileapp;
- Through social media: “Like” Central Hudson on Facebook (Facebook.com/CentralHudson) and “Follow” on Twitter (Twitter.com/CentralHudson); and
- By phone: Call the Central Hudson PowerLine at (845) 452-2700 or 1-800-527-2714, and please use the automated system to report or monitor your power condition.
- If a member of your household needs electricity to operate life sustaining equipment, please contact customer service at (845) 452-2700.
More information on preparing for storms and emergencies and communicating with Central Hudson is available at www.CentralHudson.com; for information regarding electric and natural gas safety, visit www.CentralHudson.com/Safety.
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