Storm leaves power outages in its wake

Published on Thursday, 8 March 2018 20:48
Written by LISA BACKUS


Like much of the state, residents of Central Connecticut spent Thursday morning digging out after a powerful storm dropped about a foot of snow in the region and brought down trees, limbs and wires.

Initially about 140,000 customers were without power due to high winds and heavy snow that began pummeling Connecticut by about 3 p.m. Wednesday.

About 1,000 Eversource customers started Thursday without power in New Britain, but the number was reduced to 250 by 2 p.m. Thursday.

Berlin, Southington and Bristol also experienced spotty outages, according to Eversource. The bulk of the outages occurred in the area of Marlborough, Colchester and the eastern portion of the state and the southern portion near the New York border.

The restoration effort could take days, said Eversource spokesman Mitch Gross. The number of outages had been reduced to 125,000 by 11 a.m. Thursday, he said.

Some areas of the western portion of the state received more than two feet of snow. State police responded to 1,526 calls for service, 166 accidents with no injuries, six accidents with injuries and 565 motorist assists during the storm.

Schools were closed in Berlin, Newington and New Britain, not only due to the snow on the roads and sidewalks but also due to downed trees, wires and tree limbs, officials said. The southbound portion of the Berlin Turnpike from Deming Road to Woodlawn Road was closed for several hours as the storm wound down due to wires across the road. The section of the turnpike re-opened at about 9 a.m. Thursday.

Berlin police also dealt with a one-car crash at the intersection of Mill Street and Savage Hill Road that took out traffic lights in the area. The crash occurred at about 4:40 p.m. Wednesday just as the storm was ramping up, Berlin Deputy Chief Christopher Ciuci said. In all Berlin police dealt with 27 hazards throughout town including several trees or tree limbs that had fallen down on side streets.

Newington police responded to 40 storm-related problems including downed wires, trees and tree limbs, Police Chief Stephen Clark said.

The New Britain Traffic Bureau towed six cars and handed out 116 tickets to those violating the parking ban which went into effect at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Captain William Steck said.

The parking ban was lifted at 12 p.m. Thursday. Second-shift patrol officers responded to 17 hazardous conditions including trees and wires down and cars abandoned in the roadway, Steck said.

Patrol officers dealt with another 23 assists for motorists whose cars had become disabled or stuck in the storm.

At varying points Police Chief James Wardwell and Mayor Erin Stewart lost power in the storm.

Officers spent a good deal of time guarding downed wires that obstructed Reservoir Road , but otherwise there were no major problems, police said.

“I think we did pretty well,” Steck said. “I’m looking out my window and all the sidewalks are nice and clear.”

Lisa Backus can be reached at 860-801-5066 or .

Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin, New Britain, Newington, Plainville, Southington Herald on Thursday, 8 March 2018 20:48. Updated: Thursday, 8 March 2018 20:51.