Senator Cathy Osten calls for review of Eversource’s response to windstorm

Eversource responds to the October windstorm that knocked out power in many areas of the state. (File-WTNH)

SPRAGUE, Conn. (WTNH) — Senator Cathy Osten of Sprague is joining Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff of Norwalk in trying to get the General Assembly to look at Eversource Energy’s response to last month’s windstorm.

The two Democratic lawmakers want to know whether or not Eversource followed minimum performance standards for emergency preparation and response. On Monday, the Energy & Technology Committee announced it will hold two hearings.

The October storm left 100,000 residents in the dark for multiple days, especially in eastern Connecticut.

Tom Coletti says he tried reporting the outage on Plain HIll Road in Sprague a few times.

2015 08 11 eversource truck Senator Cathy Osten calls for review of Eversources response to windstorm
(WTNH / Tina Detelj)

“It was like Wednesday when we finally got one of the scouts to come up here and look and said that, ‘gee, this should have been called in.’ I said, ‘it was called in,'” said Coletti. “I called in. My neighbors called in.”

Related Content: Lawmakers seek review of Eversource’s response to wind storm

Senator Osten says communication is a big concern whether it be reporting outages or getting information to town leaders. She also says roads in town were closed for days, even Main Street, and wonders if Eversource had enough crews on hand.

“The companies agreed that the first thing they would do is open roadways and that didn’t seem to be the stance this time,” said Senator Osten.

“Every storm is different and we learn from each one of them,” said Tricia Taskey-Modifica, an Eversource Spokesperson, who spoke to News 8 over the phone.

She says there were issues early on with reporting outages and they were addressed quickly. The storm affected every town it serves.

“In many cases, the damage was so extensive crews had to actually rebuild parts of the system,” said Taskey-Modifica.

“We want to make sure that there hasn’t been a change in policy at the top level of Eversource,” said Sen. Osten.

“My hat’s off to those guys that go up on those poles,” said Coletti. “It’s not a question of what they do, it’s a question of how they’re managed.”

The first hearing on Eversource’s response to the windstorm will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 15th at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford.

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