Millions still without power after Sandy

2012-11-03 07:51

More than 1.2 million homes and businesses in New York and 1.5 million in New Jersey were still without power, four days after Hurricane Sandy slammed into the US East Coast, the states’ power companies said.

Most utility companies in the two states said yesterday it could take a week or longer to restore power to all customers in the wake of Sandy, the worst natural disaster to strike their customers.

In New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo sent a letter to the CEOs of state power companies, saying he would “take appropriate action against those utilities and their management if they do not meet their obligations to New Yorkers in this time of crisis.”

“I recognise there are men and women in the field now working hard to restore service ... but it is your job to provide them with adequate resources and support to get the job done in a timely and safe manner,” Cuomo said.

New York’s Consolidated Edison Inc, the biggest utility in the state, said about 569 600 homes and businesses in New York City and Westchester County were without power, down from more than 900 000 affected by the storm.

Con Edison serves more than 3 million customers in New York City and Westchester County.

In New Jersey, Public Service Enterprise Group Inc said about 700 000 customers were still out, down from 1.7 million. PSEG serves about 2.2 million customers in the state.

Across the US Northeast power companies have restored electricity to more than half of the 8.48 million customers left without service, leaving nearly 3.6 million without service in 11 states yesterday morning, federal data showed.

Social media
Twitter users flocked to the microblogging network this week as Hurricane Sandy swept through the eastern US seaboard. Users sent more than 20 million tweets about the storm between Saturday and Thursday, the company said.

This far exceeds the 13.7 million tweets sent during the Super Bowl in February, typically the largest media event of the year.

Founded in 2006, Twitter has sought to position itself as a “second screen” media product that users can pull up on their smartphones while watching events like the Super Bowl or the Olympics on television.

‘Coming Together’
New Jersey natives Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi joined Sting, Christina Aguilera and other music stars yesterday in a televised benefit concert to raise funds for victims of Sandy, the giant storm that killed more than 100 and devastated large sections of the US Northeast.

The commercial-free one-hour telecast, Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together, included appearances by Billy Joel, Jimmy Fallon, Steven Tyler, Mary J Blige, Tina Fey, Jon Stewart, Whoopi Goldberg, Danny DeVito and NBC News’ Brian Williams.

Today Show co-anchor Matt Lauer was host.

The fundraiser, shown on NBC, opened with Aguilera saying: “I was born in Staten Island. Four days ago, Hurricane Sandy came through and devastated it.”

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