N.H. to ask FEMA for disaster assistance following storm flooding, power outages

Monitor staff
Wednesday, November 01, 2017

State officials are preparing to ask for federal emergency assistance to help pay for the recovery effort from Sunday’s storm that left more than 270,000 utility customers without power at its peak.

By Wednesday night, the number of homes and businesses without power dipped below 40,000 – about 5 percent of the state’s total utility customers.

“While the storm caused significant damage to our system and resulted in many blocked roads, we continue to make great progress by working around the clock to get power restored to all of our customers as quickly as possible,” Eversource N.H. Vice President of Electric Operations Joe Purington said in a statement.

Emergency management officials started taking inventory of damage across the state, which brought down trees, ruined roads and even washed away a house. Initial damage estimates were expected to be done by Friday.

“The initial damage assessments are the first step in the process of requesting federal assistance,” state Emergency Management Director Perry Plummer said in a statement, adding that teams from the Federal Emergency Management Agency could be here by next week.

While the storm resulted in the fourth largest power outage in the state, no significant injuries or deaths were reported.

As freezing temperatures set in, crews were expected to restore power to all customers by Friday.

“Crews are working exceptionally hard to restore power to every citizen and emergency response agencies are working with municipalities to make warming centers and shelters available for anyone who is still in need,” Plummer said. “Anyone seeking shelter or a warming center can call 2-1-1 for the latest shelter and warming center information.”

In addition, those who sustained damage to their home or business are urged to call 2-1-1 to apply for assistance, he said.