Rep. Sibilia: Storm info – power and phone outages expected in So. Vermont

Good afternoon Vermonters in our rural Southern Vermont towns,

Hopefully you all have enjoyed a warm and festive holiday week with loved ones. I’m reaching out to ask you to please take preparations for the coming winter storm seriously. 

While there is still some uncertainty as to the amounts and types of precipitation, it seems likely that many of us in Southern Vermont will be experiencing (possibly significant) power outages from some combination of ice, heavy wet snow and wind. It seems best to prepare for several days of difficult to impossible travel and loss of power and of course to check in on our elderly and infirm neighbors.

Below is information from the latest national weather service forecast, tips from Vermont Emergency Management and the latest Press Release from Green Mountain Power. 

If there is additional pertinent information like shelter openings or estimated times for power outages or tree clearing, I will send out another email. If you need emergency assistance, please contact 911.  If I can be of assistance to you, my contact information is home: 802-348-7131  cell: 802-384-0233 and email: lsibilia@leg.state.vt.us

From National Weather Service:

From the National Weather Service Briefing 12/29/2019 

Reminders from Vermont Emergency Management Winter Storm Information:

  • Be a good neighbor – Check on older or disabled relatives, friends and neighbors to make sure they are keeping warm safely and have sufficient food and water.
  • Be prepared.  Have a well-stocked Winter Home Emergency Supply Kit that includes flashlights, portable radio, extra batteries, a first aid kit, bottled water and non-perishable food.
  • If you see a downed power line, leave it alone – always treat power lines as if they are live.  A live wire can kill you.
  • If clearing trees or limbs make CERTAIN they are not in contact with a power line.  It trees and branches can conduct electricity and electrocute you on contact.
  • Report outages to Green Mountain Power at 888-835-4672 or online

GMP Press Release from 12/28/2019

Forecasts Continue to Call for Potentially Significant Storm with Ice, Wind and Wet Snow Sunday Night through Tuesday
GMP is Urging Safety and Alerting Customers About Potential for Hazardous Road Conditions and Outages 

COLCHESTER, Vt. – Green Mountain Power (GMP) is tracking multiple forecasts as teams plan to respond as quickly and safely as possible to outages from a large winter storm forecasted for the Northeast region Sunday night through Monday into Tuesday. Meteorologists say freezing rain, wind and wet snow are all possible throughout Vermont, with the southern part of the state – Rutland, Bennington, Windsor and Windham counties – expected to see the most ice accumulation and possible damage from this storm.  This forecast, still more than 24 hours out, has been challenging for meteorologists as the storm packs a lot of precipitation and small shift in temperature and elevation can have a big impact on how much ice accumulates.

“It’s a tough forecast, I’m worried about this, and this is a storm that is going to linger in place once it gets here,” said meteorologist Roger Hill, who forecasts for utilities in Vermont.  Hill provided the latest forecast models and potential impact on a statewide call with all utilities and emergency management officials Saturday morning.

Ice and wet snow are heavy and can tear down trees, which take down power lines with them, causing outages. Icy roads and treacherous travel are expected and GMP is urging safety, as car/pole accidents can cause outages during storms. GMP is working to make sure staff is in place to respond to potential outages as quickly and safely as possible for customers. GMP is also urging safety and for customers to be prepared for the possibility of extended duration outages if the storm damage becomes widespread. Stay alert, stay away from all downed lines or trees, and be aware of hazardous road conditions. Customers can call 888-835-4672 to report outages and should call 911 for a medical emergency.  For more GMP storm safety tips, and to sign up for text alerts go here: https://greenmountainpower.com/help/outages/staying-safe-in-a-storm/
Report outages and track restoration times in GMP’s online Outage Center: https://outages.greenmountainpower.com

Phone outages

Report landline phone outages to Consolidated at 1.844.YOUR.CCI (1.844.968.7224)

If your power is back on and your landline phone is not, and you have contacted Consolidated – a reminder that extended delays (more then 24 hours after your electric is back on) should be reported to the state Read my previous guidance on what to do when your phone is not working.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions, or if you need assistance navigating government services at (802) 384-0233 or lsibilia@leg.state.vt.us

Kind regards,
Rep. Laura Sibilia

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