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Newton responds to power outages, falling tree limbs

Posted by Leslie Anderson  October 29, 2012 08:20 PM

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Newton emergency crews worked into the night Monday to respond to power outages and falling tree limbs as Hurricane Sandy pounded the region.

As of 8:15 p.m., Newton emergency officials had responded to over 400 storm-related phone calls, said Fire Chief Bruce Proia.

More than 4,780 homes were without power throughout the city and tree limbs were strewn across sidewalks, streets and in some cases on top of homes, Proia said.

Crews will work on clearing the streets first and then get to the limbs that have fallen on homes, he said.

Officials warned residents to remain off the roads and to stay away from fallen limbs, which may be tangled around electrical wire.

On Tuesday, City Hall will reopen, although employees are advised to use their judgment about whether it’s safe for them to travel, said Mayor Setti Warren.

Earlier Monday, Newton Mayor Setti Warren declared a state of emergency, which will allow the city to ask for additional state resources and apply for reimbursements for any storm-related damages from the federal government, according to city officials.

Police advised residents to stay inside and not to park their vehicles on the street. People should keep their pets indoors and check on elderly and disabled neighbors.

The police department is encouraging citizens to check the city's website for updates, keep parked vehicles off the street, and call the police at 617-796-2100 for any additional assistance.

At around 11:40 a.m. at Washington Street and Walker Street, a tree fell onto a police cruiser that the officer had just gotten out of. The officer was not injured, police said.

Laura E. Franzini contributed to this report. Deirdre Fernandes can be reached at deirdre.fernandes@globe.com.

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