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March 8, 2017 - 9:26pm

With hundreds of outages reported in WNY, National Grid still assessing damages and power restoration estimates

posted by Howard B. Owens in National Grid, weather, news.

The severity and the duration of today's windstorm has created numerous challenges for National Grid, according to a spokesman for the utility. 

Steve Brady said the amount of damage, with calls coming in all day, has been significant.

"Lots of wires down, broken poles, services out, all compounded by the difficulties of moving around and the safety hazards of trying to put buckets in the air in the high winds," Brady said.

There is currently no estimate for when power will be restored to all National Grid customers, but technicians are have been working all day and will continue to work to restore electricity to affected areas.

The utility is bringing in crews from other service areas that haven't been hit by wind to help with the restoration efforts.

By midmorning tomorrow, Brady said, the company should be able to provide a better estimate of when the work will be completed.

"The long duration has made it very hard to assess all the damage," Brady said. "It’s clear this will be a long event, well through tomorrow and likely beyond for many customers."

At one point today, National Grid reported more than 97,000 customers in WNY without power. Brady said as of a few minutes ago, the report was about 90,000, with Niagara, Genesee, Orleans and western Monroe counties being the hardest hit.

"Our divisional crews have been at it all day, and we will have at least some work being done through the night," Brady said.

PLEASE NOTE: Genesee County's emergency dispatchers are very busy and they DO NOT KNOW when power will be restored.

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