The heaviest part of the storm has passed and no more accumulation is expected, but the problems caused by the October snow storm will linger for days.
Connecticut Light & Power reported that at the height of the storm outages, there are 13,358 Southington residents left in the dark, representing 69 percent of all Southington customers. Across the state, more than 794,000 CL&P customers, or 64 percent, are without electricity.
The numbers, reported by CL&P at 11:30 a.m. Sunday, are larger than the number of outages reported during Tropical Storm Irene.
“The storm has certainly hit the town hard,” Garry Brumback said on Saturday night. “Police and fire officials have been busy all night. There are over two dozen neighborhoods affected by downed wires and trees. It’s something that will take some time to clean up, but crews have been out since the storm started.”
Southington officials mobilized Saturday night to open a shelter at , 388 Pleasant St., at 7 p.m. Saturday for anyone in need of assistance. Staff at the house said that as of 9:30 p.m., about a half-dozen people had checked in to use the shelter.
The shelter will remain open until further notice. Those who need help getting to the shelter can contact the Calendar House at 860-621-3014.
“We will do our best to help those in town. It could be a while before power returns and we will keep the shelter open as long as necessary,” Brumback said.
The damage has also led many churches and religious organizations in town to cancel Sunday services and encourage local residents to stay indoors. Call your church before heading out this morning.
The outages reported in Southington during Winter Storm Alfred were almost three times the 3,900 reported during Hurricane Irene. In addition, the heavy snow wreaked havoc on town roads, keeping emergency officials busy throughout the evening.
Sgt. Lowell DePalma through the Southington Police Department’s Facebook page that as of 1:30 a.m., there were ongoing road closures including at the following locations:
- 184 Beechwood Drive
- 894 Andrews St.
- 51 Rourke Ave.
- Sun Valley Drive near Cianci Drive
- 91 Lowery Drive
- 27 Ciccio Drive
- West Street between West Queen Street and Welch Road
- Long Bottom Road near Rogers Orchards
- County Road
- Defashion Street
- Mine Hollow Road
- Reservoir Ridge Drive
- Andrew Street
- Berkley Avenue
- Milldale Avenue near Barr Avenue
- Meriden Avenue near Pondview Drive
- Meriden Avenue near South End Road
- 168 East St.
- Douglas Street
- Woodruff Street near Andrews Street
- Pattenwood Drive
- Academy Lane
- LaPage Drive
- Delahunty Drive
- Carter Lane near Meriden Avenue
- Mulberry Street
- Claudia Drive
- Victoria Drive
- North Main Street between Darling Street and Chapman Street
- Spring Street (one lane)
Residents also reported problems in other areas of town, including along Flanders Road and Queen Street.
“I had to do a U-turn on Queen Street tonight in a school bus because of a line hanging. As a matter of fact, three buses did that, that were bringing the football team home,” said Ronni Killam on the Southington Patch Facebook page.
DePalma said in addition to the road closures, the department had also dealt with 15 accidents, 61 cases of wires down, three disabled motor vehicles, 31 trees down, seven public hazards, four cases of buildings damaged by trees and one traffic light outage. The numbers were provided as of 11:15 p.m.
Do not report problems on the police department's Facebook page. It is not regularly monitored.
The department will continue to provide updates Sunday morning as they become available. A parking ban remains in effect on Southington roads until further notice.
So when will electricity be restored? With so many outages, CL&P spokesman Mitch Gross said the company opened an emergency operations center and immediately sent more than 200 line crews out to begin work immediately once the worst of the storm was over, but that answer remains unknown.
With the colder temperatures, it is likely to be a tough week for many area residents.
The damage was so bad that it led Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to declare a state of emergency on Saturday night.
“If you are without power, you should expect to be without power for a prolonged period of time,” Malloy said.
He said that CL&P and United Illuminating both had line crews out working during the storm, but stressed that the crews' primary function is to deal with dangerous or unsafe conditions, such as downed or live wires that could cause fires or injuries.
Malloy said restoration work would not occur until the potentially dangerous conditions caused by the storm had passed.
“We are not in restoration right now. I want to be very clear,” Malloy said. “I don’t want anyone to be operating with beliefs that we’re in restoration. We’re not. We won’t be until it’s safer.”
Malloy will hold a press conference today at 8:30 a.m. to discuss damage. To read more on the governor’s declaration, .
For those who would like to monitor their outages, CL&P is providing a free text line for people to use in order to monitor the restoration efforts in their neighborhood. You can get updates on outages in your town by texting “Outage” and your zip code to 24612.
A town-by-town breakdown provided by CL&P can also be used to monitor outages and can be accessed by clicking on the link.