UPDATE 2-About 2.8 mln still without power after Irene-DOE

Tue Aug 30, 2011 4:45pm EDT

 * New York has most outages at over 525,000
 * 32 pct of Connecticut customers affected by outages
 (Rewrites throughout)
 NEW YORK, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Power was restored by Tuesday
to a majority of the homes and businesses along the U.S.
Eastern Seaboard that were hit by Tropical Storm Irene at the
weekend, but more than 2.8 million customers remained without
electricity, the U.S. Department of Energy said.
 The DOE said 2.85 million customers remained without power
in 14 U.S. East Coast states at 1:00 p.m. (1700 GMT) on
Tuesday, down from a peak of 6.7 million affected after Irene
pelted the region with high winds and rain.
 Utility companies said it could still take days to restore
electricity in accessible areas and weeks in hardest-hit
regions.
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 Con Edison (ED.N) said it planned to restore power to all
affected New York city customers by late Tuesday night while
power may not be fully restored in Westchester county earlier
than Thursday night because of the damage Irene caused on
local infrastructure.
 "Irene took her toll on the trees and the trees took their
toll on the power lines," said Chris Olert, a spokesman for Con
Edison.
 Across the Hudson river, New Jersey power provider, PSEG
said in a twitter message Hurricane Irene caused the worst
power outage in the company's history.
 The DOE report on power cuts gives a break out of outages
by state. New York and Connecticut -- where the outages were
greatest in number -- each had more than half a million users
affected by Tuesday afternoon. Connecticut had the biggest
percentage of users affected, with one-third of the state's
customers without power, the DOE said.
 While New York state still had the most outages with about
525,000 customers without power, Connecticut was a close second
with about 509,000 customers affected and had the largest
portion of its homes and business affected, at 32 percent.
 The United Illuminating company reported widespread damage
to infrastructure in Connecticut, the government said in its
twice-daily report.
 Following is a table of outages as of 1:00 p.m. (1700 GMT)
issued by the Department of Energy.
                                   Percent of
                Customers           customers
STATE            without power        without power
Connecticut         508,963               32
Delaware              3,452                1
D.C.                  3,695                2
Maine                93,995                7
Maryland            268,038               12
Massachusetts       216,889                7
New Hampshire        31,438                5
New Jersey          343,835               10
New York            525,386                7
North Carolina      147,347                4
Pennsylvania        153,883                3
Rhode Island        133,313               31
Vermont              18,088                5
Virginia            402,535               13                
-----------------------------------------------              
TOTAL              2,850,857                
(Reporting by Selam Gebrekidan; Editing by Marguerita Choy)


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