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Quincy wrapping up recovery from Sandy

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  October 31, 2012 12:31 PM

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Fewer than 50 customers are still without power in Quincy on Wednesday, after Hurricane Sandy brought strong winds that toppled tree limbs and wrestled wires loose from their holdings.

According to mayoral spokesperson Christopher Walker, the few existing power outages are one of the only remnants from the storm, as Quincy moves toward a normal Halloween on Wednesday night.

While assessments of what worked and what did not are ongoing, Quincy officials are pleased with how the city reacted to the storm.

“Overall, Mayor [Thomas] Koch was thankful and pleased with the performance of all the emergency responders who were on the ground from the beginning of the storm to the end. They responded to little more than 200 incidents over the course of the storm ranging from trees down, wires down, some structural damage to some homes, and some minor coastal flooding issues,” Walker said.

Additionally, the Emergency Operations Center was open and active during the storm, coordinating fire, police, the DPW, and parks employees from the same location.

The tide gates also operated as expected. Problems with a broken tide gate at Broad Street, which was being repaired prior to the storm, were circumvented by DPW employees who pumped water in and out of the marsh during the storm.

“Otherwise, we didn’t have any issues with tide gates,” Walker said.

While there are still some things National Grid could work on for upcoming storms, Walker said the utility's response to Sandy was a big improvement from its response to Irene in August 2011.

“The mayor wants to make it clear that he believes National Grid improved substantially its performance this storm over Irene. He’s grateful that National Grid is with us at the table, working with us. There are obviously some things we’re going to talk about with National Grid, some further improvements, but overall it was without question an improvement,” Walker said.

At the storm’s peak, over 7,500 customers were without power in Quincy. Within 24 hours that number had been reduced by approximately a third, and by Wednesday morning that number was less than 100.

While the storm was trying during some parts, Quincy should consider themselves lucky that they did not take the full force of the hurricane, Walker said.

“Keep in mind, the mayor has been saying this was a difficult storm, yes, but when you get home and turn on the TV and look at the devastation in parts of New York and New Jersey, it puts things in perspective. We did pretty well here. We feel fortunate that we’re not in the same position as those folks only a few hundred miles south,” Walker said.

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