A rare snowstorm hit Connecticut Saturday afternoon and caused massive power outages, which the utility companies have been slow to repair. The damage is concentrated in central and northern parts of the state with some towns reporting power outages for 100 percent of Connecticut Light and Power customers.
Being left in the dark for days is nothing new to people in Connecticut who were in a similar circumstance two months ago when Tropical Storm Irene blew through the state, the powerful gusts of wind took down trees and power lines. CL&P said a manpower shortage to blame for the slow response this summer.
Unlike the long wait for electricity this summer, many people can't stay at home and pass the time playing games and reading by candle light while they wait for the electricity to be restored because the temperatures are much too cold. Instead, people fled to the shoreline, where the storm had a negligible impact.
Nancy Thibodeau of East Londmeadow, Mass. said she started driving around looking for an available hotel room in the tri-state area Monday and finally found one in Mystic and checked in Tuesday.
The Red Roof Inn in New London filled up quickly because it advertises to be pet friendly. Maintenance Engineer Gene Correll said that a majority of their 108 rooms are occupied by people, and their pets, in need of a warm place to stay. Carroll said the hotel is completely booked through Thursday.
Anita Miller, co-owner of Goldy's Restaurant, said Halloween is typically the slowest day of the year but the snowstorm created unexpected business.
"We had one waitress on praparing for the normal Halloween but we got slammed all night long," she said.
Miller said more customers treated themselves to lobster dinners and dessert and the restaurant gave out candy to the kids for Halloween.