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Met-Ed works to restore power to Reading, Berks County customers

By Pam Cunningham, Reporter
Published On: Oct 30 2012 07:29:44 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 30 2012 08:50:03 PM CDT

Pam Cunningham reports from Reading

READING, Pa. -

People were told ahead of this storm the power could be out for a week. And some have creative ways to get through it, if that is the case.

"We're a little prepared we got the cooler, food outside," said Jaime Rodriguez.

Rodriguez lives on Eckert Avenue in Reading.

"This is how we have electricity to charge out cell phones. Black and Decker, it works," said Rodriguez.

He said last year his apartment building went through the same thing.

"No electricity means no heat, no hot water, no gas," said Rodriguez.

Which means it's cold for everyone.

"We ain't going to get the power no time soon," said Rodriguez, "We know that so we just got to stick it out."

Smitty Cook is using her Prius because the power in her home is out.

"The AC adapter for the television the computer and the TV," said Cook.

And she doesn't know when it will be back.

"I don't see any crews do you?," said Cook.

A spokesperson for FirstEnergy and MetEd, Scott Surgeoner said they have crews from out of state helping to restore power.

"Our crews do work 24 hours a day, seven days a week until the last customer is restored," said Surgeoner.

Surgeoner said the winds were so strong overnight that crews couldn't really get started assessing the damage until 3 am Tuesday.

"It's extremely frustrating we lose the power first and we get back on last," said Cook, "I don't know why there's like 1300 residents out according to the outage map."

And Surgeoner said if she checks that map online (www.firstenergycorp.com) in the next few days she can learn when she can stop using her car as an office.

"Once we get some restoration times and estimates those restoration times and estimates will be posted there as well," said Surgeoner.

They're in the dark and know they'll have to wait.

"We got patience because there's nothing else we can do," said Rodriguez.

Met-Ed is not giving estimates. But as of 9:30 pm Tuesday they had 38,000 customers in Berks without power. And that number was at 50,000 at 2 pm. PPL had about 1,500 customers without power in Berks.