Crews Continue Efforts To Restore Power Days After Wind Storm; Frustrations From Customers Growing

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Frustrations are growing after this past weekend’s powerful wind storm caused more than 400,000 power outages in central Maryland.

It will be another night in the dark Monday for people in an Odenton neighborhood. Many say they have not seen a repair truck and they’be been told it could be Wednesday before they get their electricity back.
“We thought for sure our power would be up by this weekend,” said Catonsville resident Heather Schell said.
Power lines the streets in front of Schell’s home. She has been without electricity since strong winds blew through Marylandfour days ago. You can hear the rumble of generators on her block.
“My husband’s been in survival mode for us, so he’s pretty much taken care of making sure the house is as warm as he can make it,” she said.
Her neighbor, Mary Ruth Buchness, says she hasn’t seen a storm that knocked out power for this long since Hurricane Agnes
“Tell me when I’m going to have some warmth. It’s been so cold,” she said.
Crews restoring the electricity in the neighborhood came from Chicago, some even came from Canada.
“This was just a different storm in terms of the duration of it, in terms of just how gusty the winds were over a long period of time,” said Justin Mulcahy of BGE. “Crews just weren’t been able, in many cases, to safely go up and do the work. We’re working around the clock to restore people as safely as possible.”A family in Odenton had to move their kids into a hotel.

“They said that we were supposed to get somebody out here on Friday, that never happened, and then they said midweek. So that’s when we said we’re packing our bags, we’re going to a hotel. We just couldn’t take it anymore,” said Rebecca Spinks.

About 17,000 customers were still without power Monday night.


More than 2,800 out-of-state crew members will assist BGE to repair the extensive damage caused by the vicious winds.

The work to restore some sense of normalcy for hundreds of thousand of Marylanders impacted by the nor’easter continues.

For some, it’s now business as usual. But for others, it’s a reminder of Mother Nature’s destructive power.

“It’s so scary to see this tree, and thankfully that nobody was hurt,” Bardales-Ruiz said.

Millie Bardales-Ruiz’s home was spared from a similar fate, but the same could not be said for her neighbor’s car crushed by the tree in her yard.

“Surprisingly, we don’t ever lose power,” she said.

The same can’t be said for thousands of others still without power.

In a north Baltimore neighborhood, generators can be heard humming for blocks.

“On this side of the street, there’s this din of noise ’cause a lot of people have generators, and I’ve never heard that before around here,” said Hope Keller.

Some homeowners who are fortunate enough to have power in neighborhoods that are primarily dark are choosing to share the wealth by running extension cables from house-to-house.

By Monday night, BGE had gotten more than 400,000 customers back on the grid — an undertaking officials say didn’t happen without a little help.

“We have about 2,800 workers from about 13 states, including BGE employees, contractors. So, we’re just working hard to get everybody back online,” said BGE spokesperson Jarrett Carter.

But some feel forgotten, especially as days pass and downed power lines sit untouched.

BGE officials stress patience, saying work moving forward will be much more labor intensive and time consuming.

Many are now wondering and planning ahead if a second nor’easter means losing power all over again.

WJZ’s Mike Hellgren and George Solis contributed to this story.

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