BERLIN, CT - CL&P’s restoration during Superstorm Sandy was “clearly improved” from past storms, according to the Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA). PURA has wrapped up its final review of Connecticut's electric and gas utilities’ restoration following Sandy in 2012. The storm caused epic devastation up and down the eastern seaboard, knocking out power to eight million electric customers from Maryland to Maine, including 850,000 CL&P customers.
“It is welcome news to hear that all of the hard work, dedication and customer focus of our employees has been recognized by our regulators,” said Bill Quinlan, CL&P's Senior Vice President of Emergency Preparedness. "However, our work to ensure we are prepared for future emergency events is constantly ongoing. As with all storms, we will incorporate PURA’s feedback into future plans and continue our efforts to become a recognized industry leader in this area.”
In its decision PURA states "CL&P has clearly improved its Emergency Planning and Organization functions since the 2011 storms." PURA praises the company for effectively communicating with customers, as well as municipal and government officials during the restoration. The decision goes on to say that “CL&P exercised considerable effort in acquiring resources to prepare for and respond to Storm Sandy.”
PURA also acknowledged that CL&P’s efforts garnered national recognition from the Edison Electric Institute. After completing a restoration that required rebuilding entire portions of Connecticut's electric system, CL&P workers went to New York and New Jersey to assist with restoration efforts there.
In an effort to minimize damage in future storms, CL&P is investing tens of millions of dollars this year in its vegetation management program, trimming trees along 4,420 miles of its distribution system and removing trees that pose a threat to the system. The company also continues to upgrade existing information systems and deploy new technology to make its storm response more efficient. These initiatives include a tool for assessing damage to the electric system and reporting materials needed for repairs and a centralized resource tracking system.
PURA's final decision is available online at http://www.dpuc.state.ct.us.