Power Outage

Michael Brindley / NHPR

Tens of thousands of New Hampshire residents woke up without power on Thanksgiving morning. With conditions even worse than predicted, it took several days for some areas to regain power. We're looking at the response to the storm and the condition of our electric grid, and taking your comments about how New Hampshire and it's utilities could better deal with severe weather and power outages. 


Sam Evans-Brown, NHPR's Environment Reporter

Perry Plummer - Director of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Tom Magliery via Flickr CC

With frigid temperatures arriving this weekend, Kimberly Ohman with Catholic Medical Center in Manchester says people should be hypervigilant for hypothermia.

"Shivering for one, that’s going to be your number one warning sign. Also just a little bit increased confusion, and the difficulty speaking is going to be another warning sign, difficulty walking, some people may have an altered gait that’s unusual for them," Ohman says.

Jack Rodolico

Update: 10:23 AM Saturday

The number of New Hampshire customers without power after the season's first major snowstorm is down to about 40,000.

At the peak, more than 200,000 homes and businesses were without electricity after the storm Wednesday night, the fourth largest outage in state history.

Public Service of New Hampshire reported about 39,000 homes and business without power Saturday morning, mostly in the southern part of the state. It expects to have electricity fully restored by Monday.

Courtesy Chris Saunders

With tens of thousands of New Hampshire homes  without power, many residents got creative in order to cook their Thanksgiving meals.

Gilmanton resident Kelly Cleveland said her household at least has a backup plan. "My husband has grand ideas of cooking our turkey in our wood cookstove, so it should be very interesting to see how this comes out."

Asked if the family had tried this technique before, Cleveland said, "Not with a turkey. I did try a roast one time, and blew up my Pyrex baking dish. So hopefully he'll choose something other than Pyrex."

When severe weather knocks out power to tens of thousands of homes and businesses, utility crews work around the clock to restore service. But somebody is always going to be the last one to get plugged back in...and it could be you.

If you’re already waiting around for the power to come back on, it’s too late to do prep like charging batteries or buying a generator. But there are some things you can do right now to protect your home and family…and maybe even reclaim some creature comforts.

A screen cap of Unitil's outage map

About 10,000 customers around the Concord area were without power for several hours Monday evening.

The city's main utility, Unitil, did not immediately provide a reason for the outage that hit shortly after 5 p.m. Monday, but later posted updates on their Twitter feed which indicated the blackout was caused by a pole fire that occurred at a substation. 

Power was restored to all Capital Region customers shortly after 8 PM.

Rebecca Lavoie for NHPR

Electric utilities continue to fix power outages across northern New England as a fast moving storm is expected to drop heavy, wet snow in parts of Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire.

(Click here for N.H. power outage maps.)

More than 1,400 Vermonters remained without power Sunday. The Vermont Electric Cooperative says it expects to soon restore power to 700 more customers.

Central Maine Power reported about 600 customers without power Sunday evening and Bangor Hydro Electric reports 717 outages.

Flikr Creative Commons / Col.Sanders

New Hampshire’s electrical utilities are reporting scattered power outages with today’s foul weather. The state’s four utilities say at the peak there were just more than 17,000 customers without power -- mostly scattered up and down the western half of the state and on the Seacoast. 

Murray: Now that may be the peak of the trouble, it seems to be clearing and we are hoping or anticipating that we will not have a large number of new outages and can make some good inroads on restoring power to all customers.

Jonathan Lynch / NHPR

A fleet of monstrous blue trucks arrived in Manchester late Wednesday afternoon.

PSNH president Gary Long and Northeast Utilities CEO Tom May were on hand to greet the Hydro Quebec crews.

To see reinforcements come around the corner with these blue trucks is very rewarding

75 two-man crews are slated to be in New Hampshire by Thursday morning, with some crews driving as long as 12 hours to help restore power.

Daniel Dumais is Director of Distribution at Hydro Quebec and was here for the ice storm in 2008.

Cleaning Up After Sandy

Oct 29, 2012
Flikr Creative Commons / NASA

Updated Power Outage Information: (Oct. 31, 5:40 p.m.)

Total: 42,586

PSNH: 37,506, Unitil: 574, Liberty Utilities: 346, NH Electric Coop: 4,160