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More power restored as RI digs out after storm

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 10, 2013 at 9:15 pm •  Published: February 10, 2013

Crews worked to restore power to thousands of Rhode Islanders after a winter storm brought strong gusts and 2 feet of snow to the area. Highways and major roads were cleared and life returned to normal for many. A look at Sunday's developments:

POWER: 23,500 homes and businesses without power Sunday. More than 200,000 customers lost power as a result of the storm, with 187,000 in the dark at its height Saturday morning. Most of those still without power Sunday were in Washington County. Service was expected to be fully restored by late Monday, National Grid said.

SHELTERS: Hundreds of Rhode Islanders spent Saturday night at Red Cross shelters, including 344 at a middle school in Middletown. One was Newport resident Rich Dinsmore, 65, who lost power Friday night and relies on electricity to power a medical device that helps with his emphysema. He stayed at the shelter Sunday while police and shelter workers confirmed whether his neighborhood had power. It was restored Sunday afternoon.

"For all the complaining everyone does, people really came through," said Dinsmore, a retired radio broadcaster and Army veteran. "The police, the fire department, the state, the Red Cross, the volunteers, it really worked well."

TRANSPORTATION: Highways were mostly cleared of snow, though front-loaders worked to push large snowbanks off the roads in many places. Plows moved to clear secondary roads Sunday as sunny weather began to melt the snow. Some traffic lights were without power.

Flights departed from T.F. Green again Sunday, and limited rail service was available from Providence. Public transit was set to resume Monday.

SCHOOLS: Several districts canceled Monday classes. Gov. Lincoln Chafee said some school buildings still had no power.

DEATHS, INJURIES AND DAMAGE: No deaths or major accidents resulting from the storm were reported in Rhode Island. Chafee credited accurate forecasts and preparation, and the actions of everyday Rhode Islanders who checked on elderly acquaintances, helped neighbors dig out and heeded travel restrictions. Sunday night Chafee formally requested a federal damage assessment, a preliminary step toward requesting federal aid.

FORECAST: Light rain was expected Monday, which threatened snow-laden roofs with added weight and could make it difficult for school buses to navigate streets still covered with snow.


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