Gov. Peter Shumlin said today that slightly over 1,600 Vermonters remain without power, and utilities are expecting the vast majority will be restored by close of business tomorrow.
The Governor noted that the state's Forest, Parks and Recreation crews have been deployed to northern Vermont with chainsaws and other equipment to clear trees and limbs downed during the recent ice storm, and the Agency of Transportation moved additional crews to help keep roads open so local emergency responders and power companies can access downed power lines.
"My thanks go out this holiday season to the crews working 24-7 to clear debris, restore power and keep roads open in the northern part of the state. And my heart goes out to the families who are struggling to get by without electricity," Gov. Shumlin said. "This storm has been frustrating for all involved. We will continue to work with local emergency responders and power companies to restore power as quickly as possible, and push hard until the lights are back on in every home."
The Governor said a few households may remain without power into early next week, and people should prepare for outages over the next few days as ice unloads from trees. He said utility crews from New York and New Hampshire have also joined the Vermont crews to speed power restoration.
Vermont State Police visited all shelters overnight and conducted welfare checks of vulnerable citizens. The Red Cross closed the shelters in Fairfax, Enosburg, Highgate and Newport due to lack of use, although equipment remains on scene to reopen on a moment's notice if necessary. There are no road closure issues to report.
"This has been a frustrating time for Vermont families who have been without power for several days, and I appreciate that lines crews from throughout our region have given up time with their own families to ensure the power is restored as quickly as possible," the Governor said. "We are focused and committed to ending these outages."