Niagara Gazette

Local News

December 23, 2013

Thousands left without power after overnight ice storm

Niagara Gazette — Awoken by the sound of cracking tree limbs about 3 a.m., it was the start of a long day for Mayor Paul Dyster and city crews, not to mention the thousands that were left without power in the wake of Sunday’s ice storm.

City workers and National Grid crews were still working Sunday night to restore power following the early morning storm that left thousands in the city and surrounding area without power.

In the Falls, Dyster said crews were on the scene of trouble spots at 22nd Street and Willow Avenue and 89th Street and Champlain Avenue where power lines were entangled in trees. He said crews would likely be working on the issues throughout the night.

At 9:30 p.m., National Grid was reporting about 500 were without power in LaSalle, 200 powerless downtown and another 200 without power in the city’s North End.

Dyster said in addition to calling out members of the city’s forestry division early Sunday morning, snow plows were put into operation just prior to the storm to salt city roads in advance of the freezing temperatures.

Niagara County Sheriff’s officials reported the storm’s impact was felt shortly before 2 a.m. when the Niagara County Communications Center began seeing a spike in call volume. As the storm began to roll through the county, the center began receiving an average of 108 call per hour. Normally it’s an average of 27 calls an hour.

Calls to the sheriff’s office varied from transformer fires, flooded basements, downed power lines and a few minor fires.

Emergency personnel did respond to a report of carbon monoxide poisoning in the Town of Wheatfield. It was determined that a back-up generator on the rear porch of the home was the source.

Late Sunday morning, 27 of 28 volunteer fire companies were in service dealing with nearly 430 incidents related to the storm.

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