Sen. Richard Blumenthal

Xinhua/Sipa USA

Damage From Tornadic Storm In Connecticut Is Staggering, Blumenthal Says

May 20, 2018 - 5:46 pm

BROOKFIELD, Conn. (WCBS 880) -- U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Connecticut) on Sunday toured damage in Brookfield and New Fairfield, following a storm that brought tornadoes and macrobursts last week.

Blumenthal was joined on the tour by U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-Connecticut), Brookfield First Selectman Steven Dunn, and New Fairfield First Selectman Pat Del Monaco.

A total of seven tornadoes hit the Tri-State Area during the storms on Tuesday, four of them striking in Connecticut.

Blumenthal said the damage was staggering.

“Having visited communities around the state – Brookfield, New Fairfield, Hamden – this devastation is clearly a disaster. The destruction done in just 10 or 20 minutes by these tornadoes is the worst that these utility crews have seen for decades, and they’ve all around the country,” he said.

Blumenthal added that he will fight for more federal aid. He said the damage and destruction to homes, power lines, businesses, and roads is estimated at tens of millions, or even hundreds of millions of dollars, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency needs to step in.

 “These communities have rallied together – neighbors helping neighbors. Some streets; homes have been flattened while others are untouched by the path of the tornado. So neighbors have helped neighbors. Communities have rallied together. Now the federal government has to rally to the assistance of people whose lives have been upended as a result of this natural disaster that FEMA is supposed to address,” he said.

In the days since the storm, utility crews have been working around the clock, Blumenthal said.

“People are rallying together; helping each other. The utility crews have been at it for literally three, four days with very little sleep, and now the federal government has to do its part,” he said.

He said workers from Connecticut and around the country have been tireless, and he also wants to see the results in power coming back. As of Thursday, there were 150,000 customers without power across the region.

Blumenthal said he hoped power would return this week.