Just hours after CL&P reported that "virtually all" customers who lost power after the Oct. 29 snowstorm were back online, thousands in north-central Connecticut lost electricity again in Thursday's rain — and with high winds on Friday, another 10,000 lost power midday.
Outages rolled through central Connecticut through the morning and early afternoon. More than 3,000 customers in the Cheshire area lost power Friday morning after a tree in Southington fell on wires around 8:30 a.m., said Katie Blint, CL&P spokeswoman.
"We're on it," she said.
As quickly as those outages were repaired, though, others appeared: At 11:30 a.m., some 3,000 customers in Vernon were without power. Around 12:30 p.m., more than 10,000 were without power statewide, including 1,000 in the Simsbury-Bloomfield area and about 3,000 in Rocky Hill and Newington.
Three schools in West Hartford, including Conard High School, lost power Friday afternoon, but students were not dismissed early. About 2,500 customers were without power there at 4 p.m., according to CL&P's website.
In preparation for Friday's weather, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said Thursday that he directed the state Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security to discuss the planned response to any power outages for customers of both United Illuminating and CL&P.
"Normally, these types of winds would not be of concern, but with the condition of trees following the October snowstorm, they are likely to have some impact," Malloy said in a release.
"Now that power is back on across our state, we expect the utility companies will be extra vigilant about responding to any new outages, particularly as a number of residents just got [their] power back on recently."
On Thursday, the outages were caused by Thursday's heavy rain, which stressed already weak tree limbs and fragile power lines, according to Mitch Gross, a CL&P spokesman. None of the reported 9,000 new outages were related to last month's storm; almost all were restored by Thursday night.
In Windsor, where more than 40 percent of CL&P customers were without power Thursday afternoon, Gross said utility crews were working to repair a faulty transmission line affecting a local substation. Within about an hour, Gross said, 1,000 customers had been restored.
Stafford, Willington and Bolton were also hit hard.
Michael P. Krol, Stafford's first selectman, said the lights went out along a four-mile swath of town around 1:45 p.m.
"Everybody started panicking," he said. "I've been getting phone calls."
One of the calls came from a local CL&P representative, who said he was looking into the problem.
CL&P had set midnight Wednesday as its goal for restoring power to all of the approximately 830,000 customers who lost electricity in the Oct. 29 snowstorm.