Outage Leaves Nearly 1,500 Without Power

More than 1,000 National Grid customers will continue to be without power until about noon today.

National Grid was performing service on a substation in Ellery which led to a failure at that substation. The company had originally expected the outage to last roughly an hour while it serviced the substation. Estimates have varied as to how many customers were without power, with the county saying 1,451 customers Hartfield, Dewittville, Maple Springs and Ellery were without power and National Grid saying on its power outage map that 1,092 customers were without power. National Grid officials told county officials the utility was setting up a temporary substation and expected to have power restored by roughly noon today.

John Griffith, county emergency services director, worked with the American Red Cross to set up shelters at the Maple Springs Fire Department and at St. Mary of Lourdes Catholic Church in Mayville. The county used robocalls and other forms of contact to inform residents of the situation.

“The main thing is going to be personal safety,” Griffith said Tuesday night. “We don’t want someone to get in a situation where they suffer from the cold, suffer hypothermia. We have warming shelters in the Maple Springs Fire Department and the catholic church in Mayville that the Red Cross is setting up. We can assist with transportation to get them to a place that’s warm. Everyone can be warm and safe throughout this event, and as soon as it’s over we will get them back to where they need to be.”

Volunteers from the American Red Cross opened the shelter at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Griffith spoke highly of the county Emergency Services Department’s relationship with the Red Cross. Time was of the essence Tuesday, with hovering in the single digits for much of the night.

“The relationship we have, with Norma Cummings in our office, she works closely with the Red Cross,” he said. “They’ve done an excellent job on both ends to get the shelter up and running. We have a great working relationship with the Red Cross to get the process up and moving as quickly as possible.”