For the second time in two months, I’ve been displaced. First, it was Hurricane Irene, now, it’s the historic/legendary/unprecedented “October Storm.” The house has no electricity or running water, and all the local hotels are booked, so I bugged out to a relative’s place upstate.
I’d like to say that things could be worse, because that’s true. But that sort of belittles people who have been inconvenienced by this storm and, quite frankly, I’m having a hard time looking on the bright side of this situation. NYSEG claims 90% of customers will get their power back by Wednesday, but their neighbors at Connecticut Light & Power say it will take at least a week more. This was a big storm, but how long does it take to clear some downed trees and put wires back up?
Some might say that I’m whining; other people are worse off and maybe I don’t appreciate the hard work line crews are doing to restore power. Perhaps I am whining, but that seems to be the only way to get anything done. During Irene, I waited days for CL&P to remove the downed tree near my house; they claimed they were overwhelmed by the unprecedented amount of damage caused by the storm. Eventually, I got fed up and wrote the governor an e-mail. It turned out that CL&P was understaffed and was refusing to let their crews work overtime; they’re now under investigation and my e-mail is part of the record.
This time, it sounds like the same story. When people attach terms like “historic” or “unprecedented” to this storm, they just give power companies an excuse to drag their feet. History is all about the past, so let’s focus on fixing the damage and getting on with our lives before we decide what this storm’s place in history will be.