Some residents still waiting for electricity after storm

By: 
Jake Perryman
Staff Writer

While most of the approximately 11,000 West Penn Power customers impacted by power outages in the wake of Tuesday’s storm have had electrical service restored, more than 100 are still waiting as storm cleanup enters day three.
As of approximately 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, 1,829 people were still awaiting restoration of service, according to Todd Meyers with West Penn parent company First Energy. By 10 p.m., that number had dropped to 159.
“We have about 180 (employees) we have moved up into the area,” Meyers said, noting the company hoped to end the day with only about 100 customers without service. “They are helping the crews usually in the area. It does look like there's going to be some customers that are going to be out of service until tomorrow (Thursday).”
Customers still without service included 42 in Benezette Township, 41 in Ridgway, 22 in Jay Township, 19 in Fox Township, 17 in Ridgway Township, 12 in Jones Township, five in Johnsonburg and less than five in Horton Township, according to First Energy.
Those in Johnsonburg were expected to be the first to get power back, with an estimated service restoration time of 3 p.m. Jay Township was estimated to be serviced by 9 p.m. Jones Township was expected to be completed by 10 p.m. Remaining Benezette, Fox, Horton and Ridgway township, and Ridgway Borough customers were expected to have power back on by 11 p.m.
Meanwhile, municipalities were waiting on West Penn to continue storm cleanup as well.
In Ridgway, state Route 949 remained closed into the evening and, according to borough personnel, trees were down on Monterey and Cardott streets. All work had to wait for power company employees to ensure downed or entangled lines were safe to work with.
“We work with all the different municipalities. We focus on ensuring the high traffic roads are dealt with first, but we don't actually control when they open,” Meyers said, noting that municipalities or the state, depending on roadway, is responsible for opening roads after cleanup in conjunction with the power company. “We work closely with all the different highway crews.”

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