LIPA: Power Outages Could Last Weeks

Posted on 31 October 2012

By Kathryn G. Menu; Photography by Michael Heller

The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) warned East End residents on Wednesday that while it predicted power would be fully restored to nearly a million customers left in the dark after Hurricane Sandy pummeled the New York metropolitan area on Monday, it could, in fact, be weeks before power is fully restored to the island.

As of Wednesday morning, Main Street, Sag Harbor remained dark, the Municipal Building alone lit with the power of a generator.

Large swaths of Southampton and East Hampton towns were also left without power.

“To put this in perspective, once the storm left, it left us with almost a million LIPA customers without power,” said LIPA spokesman Mark Gross. “Last year, with Hurricane Irene, we had about 500,000 customers without power and unlike Irene, Sandy impacted us for two-and-a-half days and really pounded our system.”

Gross said right now LIPA was in the assessment phase, locating damaged transmission lines, substations and neighborhoods. Restoration of transmission lines, the “backbone” of the energy grid, said Gross, is the first step LIPA takes in a massive outage of this nature, and after that crews get to work restoring substations before going into neighborhoods.

Emergency care and service facilities, like hospitals and firehouses are prioritized, said Gross, and as crews are out in the field any restoration that can occur is completed. Priorities are given to the largest areas affected, added Gross.

“We did say seven to 10 days originally, but this storm was worse than anyone could have predicted,” said Gross. “Customers should be prepared to wait a little longer than that.”

LIPA is bringing in crews from across the country, said Gross, and already has crews from Michigan, Iowa and even as far as California.

As of Wednesday morning at 10:15 a.m., a total of 866,070 LIPA customers remained without power. In Suffolk County, 406,141 were without power.

In Southampton Town, 34,368 residents were without electricity and in East Hampton 18,160 remained in the dark. Those numbers included, 1,611 Sag Harbor LIPA customers without power, 3,582 in Bridgehampton, 431 in North Haven, 1,130 in North Sea, 512 in Noyac and 1,183 on Shelter Island.

“A workforce of more than 5,000 strong is working around the clock and will continue to do so until everybody has power,” said LIPA in a statement issued Wednesday morning.

“Safety should still be your highest priority,” continued the statement. “Assume any downed wire is a live electric wire. Stay away from it and report it to LIPA immediately, anytime at 1-800-490-0075.”


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14 Responses to “LIPA: Power Outages Could Last Weeks”

  1. OriginalSagSettler says:

    Boo hoo sob weep cry moan. You live in hurricane central so sack up. This is nothing compared to 39 or 53. When did locals become so WEAK?

  2. john says:


  3. john says:

    to original sag settler, do u have power? how about some compassion?

  4. peter says:

    To the A-hole Originalsagsettler, you must be a lipa worker or the CEO! As for lipa and all that work there, if i was you i would be Embarrassed And Ashamed to call myself a lipa employee!!!!! i have been around long island and have yet to see one lipa worker or truck anywhere in nassau county! lipa has always sucked and still sucks and will always suck!

  5. peter says:

    Lets not forget people it takes 10 lipa workers to screw in a light bulb!

  6. peter says:

    Here is lipa hard at work, they tell you that you can txt (at 695472) them but when you do the reply back is: THERE WAS A PROBLEM WITH YOUR MESSAGE. PLEASE TRY AGAIN OR FOR ASSISTANCE CALL CUSTOMER SERVICE AT 1-800-490-0075. So I called and got no info from the person at lipa, other then “I DON’T KNOW”! What a joke of a company!!!!

  7. peter says:

    Here is the other joke from lipa, there OUTAGE MAP on the Storm Center page on line. This is a real joke, don’t they know that about 75% of the people with no power can’t get on line to report it??? So you look at some towns with only 2 people without power, when in reality you have 100′s and 1000′s of people without power in that town, and this is what they are reporting!!! OMG what a-holes! The 3 Stooges can run this company better. And if you look at that same map, you will see that NO Crews have yet to be Assigned to 90% of nassau county and thats as of today!!. I guess they like being the #1 worst rated utility company in the USA!! Next we will hear how great a job they did etc and BS! And then hear how they need more money because of the storm and need to raise costs. And no one does anything!

  8. Babu says:

    LIPA says it will restore the entire island by the weekend of November 10. I wouldn’t be surprised,if they issue another press release and hope they won’t extend to thanks giving

  9. E.M. Maxx says:

    To orig sag……….nothing compared to 39 or 53…….. It’s 2012 you moron….one would assume advances in technology would prevent things like this . And one more thing….let me know when you have a loved one who requires oxygen 24/7 ……….

  10. John says:

    Electric utilities have not improved the transmission of power for 100 years. Advances in technology are largely unknown in this industry.

  11. lisa says:

    They are nothing but a bunch of aholes, apparently they dont know what the hell they are doing leaving us so long without lights, they should be suedor get some better people on the job this is ridiculous already enough is enough… GET THE JOB DONE STOP WASTING TIME………..

  12. Lipa customer says:

    Lipa, mangano and cuomo suck, they should ask Christie for advise

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