Jul 29, 2014
67°
Partly Cloudy

Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4)

CL&P reports that it has restored service to all but a handful of customers in town.

Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) Irene's Aftermath: Darien On Verge Of Complete Power Restoration (Aug. 31-Sept. 4)

Editor's note: For updates from Aug. 29-30, . For updates from Aug. 24-28, . 

----

MONDAY, SEPT. 4

• 2:15 p.m.: Restoration nearly complete

CL&P reports that just two of its 7,855 customers in Darien are without power. The utility says it expects to finish restoration later on Monday.

• 9:00 a.m.: Just 20 households in the dark

There are now less than 20 CL&P customers in town who don't have power, according to the utility. Crews are currently working to restore power to all 7,855 of its customers in Darien.

----

SUNDAY, SEPT. 3 

12:45 p.m.: 23 customers still without power

According to the latest numbers from CL&P, Darien is just 23 customers away from having complete power restoration. The utility is projecting that all 7,854 of its customers in town will have power back by 11 p.m. Sunday.

----

SATURDAY, SEPT. 3 

• 3:15 p.m.: Service information, dump open until 6 p.m.

In an automated phone call, First Selectman Dave Campbell said the last few powerless residents can expect to have service restored between Saturday and Sunday at midnight. Campbell added that the Darien dump is open Saturday until 6 p.m. and thanked residents for their understanding.

• 8 a.m.: Outage update

According to CL&P, 93 Darien customers—about 1 percent of customers in town—remain without power.

Here is some information for reporting hurricane damage, tips for and .

Here are the 's hours this weekend:

  • Saturday: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m
  • Sunday: 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Monday: Closed in observance of Labor Day.

----

FRIDAY, SEPT. 2

• 3:39 p.m.: Outage update

At last check, 524 customers — or 6 percent of town — were without power.

• 2:17 p.m.: Latest restoration info from Campbell 

According to First Selectman Dave Campbell, the following roads are scheduled to have their power restored at the designated times:

  • Friday by 5 p.m.: Brookside, Maple, Hollow Tree, Goodwives River, Middlesex, Delafield Assn, a total of approximately 360 homes
  • Friday by midnight: Echo Dr., Alpine, Herman, Birch Pilgrim, Stephen Mather, Maplewood, Dorchester, Hillside, Hoyt  — a total of approximately 130 homes.

According to Campbell, approximately 75 homes will be left to restore by the end of Saturday.

• 10:38 a.m.: Outage update

At last check, 779 customers — or 9 percent of town — were without power.

• 1:47 a.m.: Street-by-street restoration info

Selectman Jayme Stevenson sent along this list of recently and soon-to-be remedied outages:

  • Hollow Tree Ridge Rd. is restored
  • Brookside Rd. to Buttonwood is restored - crews are continuing to work North of Buttonwood
  • Old Kings Highway North is being worked on now and should be restored late tonight
  • Mansfield Ave. should be restored within approximately 3 hours
  • Camp Ave. should be restored within approximately 3 hours
  • Stephen Mather and Maplewood are problem roads - at least portions of that area may fall outside the 99% recovery period

At last check, 788 customers — or 10 percent of town — were without power.

----

THURSDAY, SEPT. 1

• 6:41 p.m.: 99% restored by 4 p.m. Saturday, say CL&P

According to CL&P's town-by-town list of restoration estimates, 99 percent of customers will have their power back in Darien by 4 p.m. Saturday.

"There will be isolated homes and businesses which will be repaired on an individual basis, and this process may exceed the estimates," CL&P warns.

Meanwhile, at last count, 1,548 were without power in Darien, or 19 percent of town.

• 3:45 p.m.: Outage update

Outages in Darien have dropped to 1,698 (21 percent) at last count, according to CL&P

• 12:15 p.m.: TV79 back online

has returned to the airwaves after power was restored at Town Hall, Jim Cameron reports.

• 11:47 a.m.: Beach water checks out

Darien Director of Health David Knauf said Thursday that water samples taken and were tested and "came back fine."

"Beaches can be open for the weekend as far as water quality is concerned," he wrote in an email.

The department conducted the tests due to "widescale discharges of raw sewage" into Long Island Sound after overwhelming many coastal sewer systems.

First Selectman Dave Campbell said that "no swimming" signs were posted at the town's beaches Wednesday.

• 10:04 a.m.: Could be worse

At last check, 25 percent of Darien — or 1,969 customers — was still without power. That's no small number, to be sure, but it could be worse: the town of Salem, Conn. is still 100 percent in the dark four days after Irene, followed closely by Canterbury and Sterling (99 percent) and Clinton (95 percent).

• 9:00 a.m.: Reader updates

We've received a few more updates over the past couple of hours:

  • Reader Kathy Alpeter reports that power was restored last night on Stanton Road.
  • Reader submission "The entire Pine Brook Lane in Darien has been without power since Sunday. Do you know if CL&P has plans to fix the downed wires on Old Kings North in the near future? A lot of people live in that complex."
  • From reader Brian Rayhill: "The tree was removed from Gardiner Street and power restored during the night so the road looks good for the school buses."
  • From Twitter user RAD01: "CL&P tells me that power on Cliff Ave. Darien to be restored by 4 p.m. on Saturday. Wish it was sooner!"

• 8:04 a.m.: Correction — Ox Ridge and Holmes open at 10:30 a.m.

Ox Ridge and Holmes schools open today at 10:30 a.m., not 10:10 a.m. as earlier stated. Apologies for the confusion!

• 7:25 a.m.: Outages dip below 2,000

At last check, 1,967 customers (25 percent) were without power,  according to CL&P.

• 6:28 a.m.: Morning status check

Good morning — here's where things stand across town:

  • At long last, it's the first day of school(!) Darien Public Schools are running on a 90-minute delay today, which works out to start times of 9:10 a.m. for Darien High School, 9:25 a.m. for Middlesex Middle School, 9:55 a.m. for Hindley, Royle, and Tokeneke schools, and 10:30 a.m. for Ox Ridge and Holmes schools.
  • School buses are also running on a 90-minute delay today. .
  • 2,010 customers are currently without power in Darien, according to CL&P. At 25 percent of town, that's the lowest tally seen since the early hours of the storm.
  • The National Hurricane Center is tracking another storm, Katia, that's on a somewhat similar track to Irene. ?

----

WEDNESDAY'S COVERAGE

• 10:59 p.m.: "My kids must navigate past multiple downed wires"

From commenter Robert Vilter:

The message I'm hearing from town officials is that it is safe for children to attend school tomorrow (Thursday), yet, my kids must navigate past multiple downed wires on Wilson Ridge East to get to the school bus. This perspective lacks honesty and defies common sense.

• 10:47 p.m.: Power not fully restored on Harbor?

We're told that at least one Harbor Road home (number 11) is still in the dark, despite reports that power was restored to the street. Any other residents having the same experience?

• 10:34 p.m.: Darien YMCA working to reopen

Pat Morrissey, executive director of the Darien YMCA, wrote Wednesday that "every effort is being taken to open our entire building:"

While the Y did not experience any damage from the surge of Hurricane Irene, the building suffered water damage along the long corridor, babysitting, locker rooms and laundry area. The facility currently has partial power. Holly Pond Nursery School and the front offices have full power, lights, telephones and computers. The rest of the building, however, has fragmented power and we cannot fully illuminate the pools, studios, Wellness Center and locker room areas. Moreover, we cannot run essential pool filtration systems, air handling units and the boilers to heat domestic hot water.

Read the full statement here.

• 9:55 p.m.: Darien Times' print edition delayed; paper available online

The Darien Times reports that its print edition has been delayed due to the impact of Irene, but this week's paper can be viewed online.

• 9:48 p.m.: Outage update

At last check, 2,324 customers (29 percent) were without power, according to CL&P.

• 9:16 p.m.: Power back on Harbor Road

From Patch contributor Ken Allen:

I'm glad to be able to report that power has been restored on Harbor Road. My thanks to the tree and power crews that stayed on the job tonight to help us out

• 8:48 p.m.: Darien Doughnut, other businesses regain power

Darien president Carol Wilder-Tamme says has regained power and will reopen at 5 a.m. Thursday. The doughnut shop is one of numerous businesses that regained power in Noroton Heights Wednesday, including .

• 7:11 p.m.: Roads should be cleared tonight, says Campbell

First Selectman Dave Campbell says that crews expect to finish clearing all roads tonight across town — in time for school buses to circulate safely Thursday morning.

"All the heavy stuff will be done before sundown," Campbell said. Some "small debris" and tangled wires remain.

Of ten "high priority" spots identified earlier today, crews have already cleared seven, he said.  has also had its power restored.

Utility crews have finished installing new poles where they believe they'll be needed, Campbell said, though reattaching wires and restoring full power will require more work. Crews are currently working in Noroton Heights, he added, where a number of stores have already regained power. 

At last count, 2,451 customers (31 percent) were without power in Darien, according to CL&P. The utility has warned that outages statewide are likely to continue .

• 6:47 p.m.: Note on school buses

School buses will be running 90 minutes late Thursday in keeping with Darien Public Schools' delayed start. For reference, here are the normal bus schedules for 2011-12.

• 6:18 p.m.: Outage update

At last check, 2,439 customers (31 percent) were without power,  according to CL&P.

• 4:54 p.m.: Old Farm Road work in progress

Crews are currently working to clear Old Farm Road, reports selectman Jayme Stevenson.

• 4:42 p.m.: Post Road outage restored

Tweet from selectman Jayme Stevenson: "Post Road outage has been restored!"

• 4:35 p.m.: Reader updates from around town

Below are a few outage updates we've received over the course of the day. (We're doing out best to post things in a timely fashion, but the volume of feedback is high, so please let us know if any of this information is obsolete.):

  • Reader David Nason: "Upper Hollow Tree Ridge Road — power been out since Saturday evening (before storm). No signs of CL&P. Tree down on Stephanie Lane intersection."
  • Commenter CTgal111: "No power on Parsons Walk near the high school and right off Middlesex road since 3 a.m. Sunday. Neighbors on the next street over never lost theirs. Colleagues at work who live in Stratford (on beach) Norwalk and North Stamford all have the power back already after losing it. Doesn't make sense!"
  • Commenter Darien Resident: "How can the town allow wires to continue to block Wilson Ridge Road East and allow a Child Day care center to remain open just across from the downed wires? This surely sounds like a high priority? Please send the trucks to open this road and make it safe!"
  • Reader submission: "A tree and wires remain in the road on Stony Brook Road completely blocking the road. I was wondering how Bus 16 will be able to pass through this area on its route tomorrow morning."
  • Commenter Chaga: "In re priority spots, what about Middlesex around Hunt Club? Lines still on road."
  • Reader John Lamendola: "I echo the sentiment of Mr. Gilman. And to add there is also power out on Patton Drive, which is adjacent to the Heights shopping area. It'ss an easy fix — either a replacement of a fuse or transformer."

• 4:06 p.m.: Outages drop again

At last check, 2,435 customers (31 percent) were without power,  according to CL&P. That's down from 45 percent at the beginning of Wednesday.

• 3:24 p.m.: "CL&P Operations Manager on scene"

Tweeted by selectman Jayme Stevenson moments ago:

CL&P Operations Manager on scene in Darien and promised resources will work through the night.

• 3:07 p.m.: "We continue to move forward with clearing roads and restoring power"

First Selectman Dave Campbell released the following statement Wednesday:

As of 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday we continue to move forward with clearing roads and restoring power. Already, 62% of residents have power. All major roads are open. We have eight (8) high priority public safety trouble spots to complete. There are eleven (11) CL&P trucks in Darien. Middlesex Middle School is open today until 8:00 p.m. for showers. There are six (6) male and twelve (12) female private showers available there. Bring your own towels and toiletries. Signs will direct you to the locker rooms. All schools will be open tomorrow with a ninety (90) minute delay. A reminder, the Darien Library is open until 10:30 p.m. through Thursday, Sept. 1. The Senior Center is open for its regular hours. Thank you for your continued patience, your safety is our concern.

• 2:56 p.m.: Under 3,000

Darien power outages drop have dropped to 2,743 (34 percent of town), according to CL&P.

• 1:51 p.m.: Schools opening 90 minutes late Thursday

It's official — Darien Public Schools will open 90 minutes late on Thursday, according to a statement from Superintendent Stephen Falcone:

After working closely with town officials, the Darien Police Department, and our district facilities and administrative personnel, I am pleased to report that conditions have improved to the point that we can begin school tomorrow, Sept. 1, on a 90-minute delay. All school buildings currently have power and food service capability, and road conditions will allow for appropriate, safe transportation. We are thankful to the many people who have contributed to this clean-up effort and are looking forward to welcoming the children of Darien back to school. The start times for each particular school are as follows:
  • Darien High school: 9:10 a.m.
  • Middlesex Middle school: 9:25 a.m.
  • Hindley, Royle, and Tokeneke schools: 9:55 a.m.
  • Holmes and Ox Ridge schools: 10:30 a.m.
  • School personnel are not on a 90-minute delay and should report to school at their regular time tomorrow.
  • Darien High School and Middlesex Middle School: All students should report directly to their homeroom.
  • Elementary Schools: We encourage all students to ride the bus, particularly for these first few days of school, however, if your child is walking home, or is going to be driven home, please have him/or her bring a note indicating this preference.
  • Kindergarten Orientation for students and parents will take place in each school tomorrow at the following times: Last names A-M, 11:00-12:00; Last names N-Z: 12:30-1:30.

• 1:06 p.m.: Five Mile River Road clear

Five Mile River Road has now been cleared, selectman Jayme Stevenson reports.

• 12:47 p.m.: Top priority spots

Selectman Jayme Stevenson sends over this list of "highest priority" locations where crews are focusing on clearing trees and power lines:

  • Stony Brook Road
  • Raymond Street (3 locations)
  • Beach Drive
  • Harbor Road
  • Wilson Ridge East
  • Old Farm Road
  • Five Mile River Road [now cleared]
  • Peach Hill Road
  • Long Neck Point Road

"This is by no means a complete list of trouble spots," Stevenson noted. "These are the 'highest priority' public safety trouble spots. We know there are still wires down in other areas."

"This list is not in order of attention. We have asked for immediate attention to all these areas and more utility resources to accomplish that," she added. 

• 12:10 p.m.: Outage check

At last check, 3,096 customers (39 percent) were without power, according to CL&P.

• 11:45 a.m.: Crews targeting 10 problem spots

First Selectman Dave Campbell said that crews are currently targeting 10 locations across town that still have downed trees or wires, including Tokeneke Road and Old Farm Road.

That work "should be completed today," Campbell said. Crews are also working on "all-over cleanup" of other areas, he said.

• 11:31 a.m.: Reporting downed trees and power lines

A reminder that town officials have asked residents to formally report downed trees and power lines one of two ways:

  • If you have regular internet access, file a citizen service request  using this link.
  • If you don't, call the 's non-emergency number: 203-662-5300.

• 11:24 a.m: Large tree down on Raymond Street

Reader submission:

There is a fallen large tree hanging on the electric wires across from 95 Raymond Street. It is hidden by the leaves. Someone should come out and get the tree off the wires. I think it is unnoticed because it is hidden by the leaves and you can drive under it. Let's get it cut down so the wires don't come down.

• 11:12 a.m.: "High praise to the Darien police, fire, and other emergency workers"

From reader Rick Bullitt:

Power has been back on in at least parts of Holmes Avenue. We saw a crew down the street earlier this morning, so David Bayne's comment that they would be looking at Holmes this morning can be confirmed. There is still no sign of cable/internet being restored. We would like to thank all the crews who have been working so hard to restore power and the police who have been doing a very good job of directing traffic. We especially want to thank the Darien Library for working so hard and staying so late. They have made a difficult situation almost festive.

He adds:

One thing I want to point out. I work in New Jersey; it took four hours to get home last night, and all the problems were in New Jersey. Since I-287 North was closed for much of the day, commuters were either stuck on I-80 for hours or thrown onto local roads. Those local roads that had problems were closed only at the site of the problem, which meant that a lot of people had to turn around in the road and go back a long way to find a way around. So high praise to the Darien police, fire, and other emergency workers for flagging so many streets at an intersection, which made navigation through the downed trees much less frustrating.

• 11:05 a.m.: "Dangerous lines down across road"

Commenter Marta Lewis writes:

Wilson Ridge East still has dangerous lines down across road, making it impossible for residents to drive out or for emergency vehicles to drive in. No garbage collector, no mail coming in either.

• 10:56 a.m.: "Probably the first area of Darien to lose power"

From reader Doug Reid:

Middlesex Road opposite the Hunt Club. We lost power at 7:30pm on Saturday night before the storm even started (probably the first area of Darien to lose power). A transformer blew and caused a large electrical fire with live wires wielding around. We immediately called 911 to report the fire and the emergency services arrived (only police, never a fire truck) about 15 minutes after the fire (and the power!) went out by itself; probably 30 minutes after our call. We remain without power and judging by the reports on your website, expect to be that way for a while longer. Obviously essential services are the priority, but does anyone know how CL&P and the Town prioritize the non-essential residential areas? Apparently not on a FIFO basis!

• 10:40 a.m.: Showers available at Middlesex Middle School

Showers will be available from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. today at Middlesex Middle School, according to selectman Jayme Stevenson. There are 6 men's and 12 women's showers, all of them private cubicbles. Use the main entrance and follow signs to the locker rooms. Bring your own toiletries and towels.

• 9:45 a.m.: "Still have not turned the power back on"

From reader Rick Duker:

We live on Lantern Lane (off of Middlesex Road and near Hollow Tree). We did not lose power during the storm but then CL&P apparently shut off our power at 8:30 p.m. on Sunday to deal with tree removal somewhere near us. It’s Wednesday morning and they still have not turned the power back on!

• 9:02 a.m.: Police barricades removed

Darien police say that cones, barricades, and tape lines blocking off "countless" dangerous locations have been removed by residents or motorists.

"We ask for your patience as we work hard to restore normal conditions," the department wrote on Tuesday.

• 8:28 a.m.: "Huge tree limb" on wires near Blueberry Lane

Reader submission:

A huge tree limb is hanging on the wires near 51 Blueberry Lane. Police need to block cars from traveling underneath these wires. It is very dangerous! We've been powerless on Blueberry since 1:32 a.m. on Sunday. No sign of any help. My husband and a neighbor cut up another tree that had blocked the far end of Blueberry, otherwise there would have been no access to the road.

• 7:56 a.m.: Power restored to all schools

Power has been restored to all of Darien's public schools, according to selectman David Bayne. had been the last of the seven still in the dark.

Overall, 3,048 customers (38 percent) were without power in Darien at last count.

• 7:53 a.m.: Clock working again at Darien High School

From reader Meredith Edwards:

Just on a walk by DHS — the big clock is working for the first time since the storm. Assume that means power restored.

• 7:30 a.m.: Darien Library by the numbers

The estimates since Irene passed through town. Library staff has purchased two dozen power strips to meet the extra demand, which could add a few hundred dollars to its electric bill.

But even if there's an increase in cost, Director Louise Berry said it's worth it: "One couple told me 'you truly are the community center of Darien. That's what we like to hear." .

• 7:10 a.m.: "It's a big safety issue"

From reader Joshua Gilman:

I don't think anyone realizes Heights Road and parts of Avalon Darien have no power. Several trees and lines are down behind Heights pizza. The train station is dark. How is this not a main road that deserves priority and how does Metro-North allow this to continue? It's a big safety issue. Also, Cablevision is a joke. They said they have crews out working on the problem but when pushed they can't say where, and a survey of the town shows no trucks.

• 6:54 a.m.: Morning status check:

Good morning! Here's where things stand across Darien:

  • 3,141 customers (39 percent) are without power across town, according to CL&P. That's about 650 fewer customers than 24 hours ago.
  • First Selectman Dave Campbell says that crews will focus on Archer Lane, Hecker Ave, Old Farm Rd., and Holmes Ave. this morning.
  • Darien Public Schools are closed Wednesday, but the Darien Senior Center is operating on a regular schedule.
  • At last report, DHS was the only school still in the dark, but a reader tells us power was restored in the immediate vicinity of the school last night. Thursday could indeed be the first day schools are open — we'll let you know what we hear.

How are things in your neighborhood? Have you come across hazards that you don't think the town is aware of? Have you made progress cleaning up your own property? Email johnd@patch.com and we'll get the word out (and keep sending us your photos, too).

• 12:30 a.m.: Outage check

3,560 customers are without power in Darien (45 percent of town) at last count,  says CL&P.

Don’t miss updates from Patch!