Cleanup, power restoration efforts continue in Franklin County following Monday’s storm

Power outages are still a problem in Franklin County after Monday’s winter storm took down power lines and utility poles.
Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 2:43 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 24, 2023 at 6:46 PM EST
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WENDELL, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Power outages are still a problem in Franklin County after Monday’s winter storm took down power lines and utility poles.

Downed branches, wires, and utility poles were a result of the four to eight inches of snow that came down in Franklin County yesterday. In Wendell, along one stretch of road, branches could be seen drooping down into the roadway. Meanwhile, people living in the surrounding area told Western Mass News that the heavy snow has left them without electricity since late Monday night.

“We’ve lost power a few times. It’s comeback briefly, maybe once or twice for about an hour or so. We lost it again last night at about eight o’clock and it hasn’t come back yet,” said John Kinder of Shutesbury.

“First, we were out for seven hours, then it came back on for about three hours, and then it went back off and it’s still off, so it’s been off since last night,” added Debra Pichanick of Shutesbury.

National Grid said they have deployed 1,200 personnel to help get the power back online. In a statement, they said, in part:

“Following a damaging storm that swept through central and western Massachusetts on Monday, bringing heavy wet snow and gusting winds that toppled trees, took down power lines, and broke poles, National Grid remains focused on the safety of its employees and communities during clean-up, repairs, and restoration.”

We found local public works departments and tree cutting companies cleaning up roads and cutting tree limbs, which will assist National Grid crews in their power restoration efforts. Meanwhile, National Grid is assuring customers their power will hopefully be turned on sooner rather than later. In a statement, Tanya Moniz-Witten, vice president of New England electric operations for National Grid, told us:

“Our crews have been working through challenging conditions and remain dedicated to restoring customers as quickly as possible while keeping our teams and the public safe…We are on track to restore most customers by tonight, and we will continue working until every last customer has had their service restored.”

While National Grid anticipates most of their customers to have the power back on by later tonight, they said that some places might not have power back until tomorrow.