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Mass. Electric Restores Power From 2008 Ice Storm
NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. (CAP) - Representatives from National Grid/Massachusetts Electric announced this week that workers have finally finished restoring power to those left in the dark by the vicious ice storm of December, 2008.
"It took crews working 'round the clock, except for nights and weekends, for almost three years, but we finally got it done," said Marcy Reed, president of National Grid Massachusetts. "We couldn't be prouder of the men we had dedicated to this difficult job - both of them."
Now the company will be able to devote more workers to the power outages that followed the Christmas weekend nor'easter of 2010, the central Massachusetts tornadoes of this past June and the freak October snowstorm earlier this month.
"Although it will probably be closer to 2014 by the time we get to that last one," said Reed.
Still, "we're taking these outages very, very seriously," Reed added, noting that they were the subject of a seminar at a week-long junket National Grid executives attended recently at the Tierra Del Sol Resort and Country Club in Aruba.
"We devised some very useful strategies there," said Reed, declining to name any of them specifically.
Reed said power outages resulting from the 2010 nor'easter should be resolved any month now, and asked residents without power to be patient. "We're working as fast as we possibly can, kind of," she noted.
Bob and Sheila Fernmeyer of Athol, Mass., who had been without power since Dec. 11, 2008, said they were "thrilled" to finally get the lights turned on this week.
"I can't say it's been easy," said Bob Fernmeyer, who noted that the couple took to burning household objects around February of 2009, and that there's very little left in the way of usable furniture and room fixtures. Also, they'd learned to subsist almost exclusively on foods that could be stored at room temperature, like potatoes and Spam.
"Plus we have no idea what's on TV anymore," added Sheila Fernmeyer. "Is My Own Worst Enemy still on? That Christian Slater is dreamy."
The preponderance of unusual weather incidents in the area, including the great Romney floods and the cable disaster of 2008, haven't helped matters. But with hundreds of thousands still without power, complaints are mounting against National Grid as well as other local power providers, including NSTAR, Northeast Power and New England Power Company. Many of the complaints apparently come via the U.S. Mail, scrawled on pieces of bark.
Reed was undeterred, however. "Those people need to buck up. I think we are doing a very good job," she said, admitting however that she was using a very loose definition of the words "we" and "very good" and "job."
"Just bear with us - smile every day, and remember that we're all in this together," Reed continued. "Now if you need me, I'll be in Aruba."
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