* Lower Manhattan to have power by Saturday
* 650,000 still without service in NYC and Westchester
* Nationwide, 4.7 million without power in 12 states
* In hard-hit states, NY and NJ, no service for 1.5 million
By Scott DiSavino
Nov 1 Consolidated Edison Inc said
Thursday most of its customers in New York City and Westchester
County, New York, will have power back by Nov. 10-11, after
Hurricane Sandy slammed into the U.S. East Coast earlier in the
week, causing widespread damage and flooding.
The New York utility said it expected to restore power in
lower and mid-Manhattan by Saturday, Nov. 3.
Earlier, the company had said it expected power to be
restored to lower Manhattan by Friday or Saturday and that it
would take at least a week to restore power to areas with
overhead lines like Westchester.
But on Thursday morning, Con Edison said it expected to make
significant progress restoring electricity over the next two
days, with its latest estimate based on a recent assessment of
the damage caused by the massive storm.
About 900,000 customers lost power after Sandy walloped the
area, Con Edison said, making the storm the worst natural
disaster in the company's history.
The company said its crews had restored power to about
250,000 customers, and, as of 11:00 a.m. EDT, the company was
working to restore power to another 650,000 customers.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday the New
York Marathon remained on schedule for Sunday and that the event
would not "redirect any focus" from the city's safety and
The city's schools are scheduled to reopen Monday, Nov. 5.
Public schools have been shut since Monday, Oct. 29, when
the massive storm slammed into the U.S. East Coast, killing more
than 80 people and causing billions of dollars of damage and
PUMPING OUT SEAWATER
Con Edison said crews working on the underground electric
system in Manhattan had pumped massive amounts of seawater out
of the facilities, and had to clean and dry all of the equipment
before they could safely be put back into service.
In areas served by overhead power lines, crews had to
contend with more than 100,000 downed wires, as well as blocked
roads and flooding, the company said.
To help restore power, Con Edison said it had lined up more
than 1,600 external contractors and mutual aid workers from
utilities as far away as California.
The company did not say in its latest statement how many
customers still lacked power in each borough.
As of 4:30 a.m. EDT Thursday, the utility said about 227,000
customers were still out in Manhattan, 103,000 in Queens, 59,000
in Brooklyn, 83,000 in Staten Island, 36,000 in the Bronx and
166,000 in Westchester County. (By 1:00 p.m., the total number
of clients was down to 650,000.)
Sandy left more than 8.48 million customers without power in
21 states, from North Carolina to Maine, and as far west as
There were still 4.7 million customers without power in 12
states, according to federal data Thursday morning.
The U.S. Department of Energy said there were still more
than 1.5 million homes and businesses without power in the
nation's two hardest hit states - New York and New Jersey.