Storm knocks out power to more than 300,000

Powerful winds knock down power lines, trees

Pounding rain and damaging winds left behind a trail of destruction Monday in New Hampshire, where hundreds of thousands of homes were without power.

More than 300,000 customers lost power at one point Monday morning, although by noon, that number had come down to 248,463. According to Eversource, 169,187 of its customers were without power across the state, or more than one-third of its total customers.

New Hampshire Electric Cooperative reported 47,066 customers without power.

Unitil reported 21,027 customers without power, and 11,183 customers of Liberty Utilities were without power.

>> Power outage maps: Eversource | NHEC | Unitil | Liberty

Utility officials said the high winds remain a top concern as rain leaves the area. They urged residents to avoid any downed lines.

More than half of the Eversource customers in Londonderry — just over 6,000 customers — were still without power as of 6 p.m. Monday.

>> Watch: Storm knocks out power to hundreds of thousands in New Hampshire

The traffic lights at the intersection of Mammoth Road and Route 102 were out, causing some traffic issues.

“The no. 1 concern we have at the moment is actually safety. We know with Halloween and trick-or-treatingthere may be kids and parents out and about. There may be wires down. We really want to stress that with all the debris out there, people really have to be safe,” Eversource spokesperson Martin Murray said.

Murray said Eversource had more than 500 line and tree workers out Monday night and that they anticipated that new crews would come in overnight from as far away as Canada.

In Londonderry, many woke up to a mess due to the storm damage.

“Well, it was trees down everywhere,” said Corrine Bonnette.

Patti Logan came home to the damage from a weekend away.

“We saw this lovely tree across the road,” she said. “We could just get into our driveway.”

Logan and her husband had to clear branches from the driveway after a large tree brought wires down with it.

Just around the corner on Falcon Road, several people remain trapped on the dead-end road with another large tree in the street. Neighbors said the wires were taken down the full length of the road.

“Absolutely huge, just leaning way over the road on top of the wires,” Bonnette said.

Bonnette noticed a tree hanging over Mammoth Road, but after hours of trying, couldn’t get through to Eversource.

“When the wind started to pick up, we felt we should probably give 911 a call,” she said. “We didn’t want to see that falling onto somebody’s car as they were driving by.”

“As we actually made it out at some point, we were able to go down and see tree crews all down the street like a warzone,” Steve Blanc said.

Many in town are using generators and battery-operated lights

“It’s been a lifesaver a number of times,” Bonnette said.

“We just ate dinner by lantern,” Logan said.

Residents are urged to use caution if they are using generators. Propane or gasoline generators should never be used inside a home or garage because deadly fumes can quickly build up. Such generators should be placed well outside any structure.

>> Watch: State officials provide generator safety tips

Hundreds of schools across the state were closed because of the storm.

Some residents were forced to evacuate because of the weather. Campton residents along the Bebee River and the Mad River, including a mobile home park, were ordered to get out before the rivers crested.

Water was raging behind the Campton Dam on the Mad River, drawing spectators with cameras and cellphones. Residents said they woke up to the sound of loudspeakers ordering them to evacuate.

>> Full list of school closings

“We were woken up around 5 this morning by sirens and word that we had to evacuate,” evacuee Krystal Elder said.

Debra Coffin, who was evacuated from the Six Flags Mobile Home Park, said the storm’s power was clear overnight.

“The wind was horrible last night,” she said. “It woke up everybody at 2 o’clock, ripping off the sides of the trailer.”

Town officials said they were working to make sure everyone was safe and looked after.

“Well, we opened up two shelters, one here at town hall and one up at the school,” Emergency Management Director Karl Kelly said.

Officials said by noon that they believed that the river had crested and the danger was easing.

Transportation officials said that by noon, there were 363 road closures reported across the state, including 107 state roads. DOT spokesman Bill Boynton said it could be some time before all the roads are reopened.

Some roads were blocked by fallen trees or utility poles, while others were damaged by floodwaters.

Hooksett police reported full closures in both directions on West River Road (Route 3A) between the Interstate 93 rest stop and Pine Street, Hackett Hill Road between South Bow Road and Brown Road, and Riverside Street between West River Road and Main Street.

Goffstown police reported closures or restrictions on Tibbets Hill, Paige Hill, Shirley Hill, and Pollard Roads.

Amherst police reported that while and officer was responding to a home on Horace Greeley Road shortly after midnight for a fallen tree, another tree blew down on top of the cruiser.

No one was in the vehicle at the time, and the officer was standing about 20 feet away at the time of the impact.

Emergency crews in Manchester were busy overnight as the wind took trees down across the city.

A 200-year-old tree took down power lines on Bremer Street.

“Wires down, some local road flooding. Many, many trees down,” Manchester Fire Chief Dan Goonan said.

Parts of the rubber roof of a triple-decker home on School Street were torn off in the storm.

The American Red Cross is working with the six families who live in the building.

>> Watch: Six Manchester families displaced after wind damages apartment

Homes and streets were littered with branches and entire trees.

The Boisverts were inside when a giant tree came down on their roof.

“I heard the big bang at first I figured it had to be something serious,” Joe Boisvert said.

“Couldn’t see the damage because it was very dark. Firefighters arrived and told us not to go toward the front of the house — stay in the rear,” Nancy Boisvert said.

Amazingly, there was no interior damage to their home.

Trees came down on both sides of Maple Street, one on top of a house on one side and another falling directly between two homes on the other.

“I woke up and I heard the wind. It was crazy, and then I saw the firemen across the street with a tree that was uprooted,” Rebekah Ravgiala said. “And then I heard the crash and I was like, ‘Oh no.'”

In total, the Manchester Fire Department received about 120 storm-related calls. Fortunately, no one was hurt in the Queen

A home in Warren was destroyed when most of it was swept up into the Baker River.

>> Warren home swept up, destroyed by floodwaters

Despite repairs made over the summer to build up the riverbank, it wasn’t enough to save the house in the wake of this storm.

A piece of the home is still hanging on to the embankment.

>> Raw video: Warren home partially swept away by floodwaters

“When someone doesn’t have access to their home for whatever amount of time, whether it’s power or a breach to the roof, the folks will get donations from the local community so they can go get a hotel room or groceries and supplies, so they can get on their feet and start to make a plan,” said Lloyd Ziel of the Red Cross.

The storm wreacked havoc in some parts of the North Country, high winds uprooting trees and heavy rain causing flooding.

Along Riverside Drive, or Route 16, by White Mountain Community College, dozens of trees came down. At one point, the road was blocked by the fallen trees.

Route 2 in Gorham was shut down to the Maine border after the road was undermined by rushing water.

>> Watch: Route 2 washed out in Gorham

“The road over-topped due to a flash flood and washed out portions of the road and portions of the bridge abutments,” said Phillip Beaulieu, of NHDOT.

Route 2 handles more than 3,000 vehicles a day, many of them big rigs.

“We are still coming up with a plan right now. We have contractors onsite and a few other engineers here determining what the best course of action is to move forward, and we are hoping that the road is opened back up to one lane of traffic by the end of the day,” Beaulieu said.

The Red Cross is also helping a man in Madison after a tree crashed through his home.

Police in Berlin said the damage from the storm was widespread, especially in low-lying areas. A section of Wood Road was closed because of high water, but the water levels dropped as the storm subsided.

Young Emma Rancloes said the storm was the most frightening thing she’s ever been through.

“We were all hurrying downstairs to sleep in our living room because everyone was afraid that the tree branches would fall on our roof,” Emma said.

An angry Ammonoosuc River rushed along Route 302 Monday, causing headaches in the White Mountains region.

>> Watch: Storm brings flooding concerns to White Mountains region

“There’s a lot of debris, a lot of washouts on the shoulders. There’s one box culvert that looks like it’s gone,” said Bill Cass, Assistant Commissioner of NHDOT.

The missing culvert caused the road to buckle and collapse.

“We’re assessing the damage right now and seeing what we need to do to repair it,” Cass said.

Route 3 in Carroll was also closed as NHDOT crews worked to repair a bridge abutment, but water wasn’t the only worry.

Toppled trees and downed power lines could be found just about everywhere, including Bethlehem resident Roy Parker’s backyard.

“I thought there was some kind of micro-burst or tornado that came through with all the trees down in my yard. That tree came down from my yard that took the lines out and the pole so there’s a serious amount of damage,” Parker said.

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