Storm Damage in New Fairfield

Sean Adams/WCBS 880

Tens Of Thousands Remain Without Power After Tornadoes Hit Tri-State Area

May 17, 2018 - 8:26 am

SOUTHBURY, Conn. (WCBS 880/AP) -- The National Weather Service has confirmed that two additional tornadoes struck in western Connecticut during this week's severe storms, bringing the total to seven for the Tri-State area.

Nobody was injured by the twisters, which the weather service says hit Winsted at about 3:45 p.m. Tuesday and the Barkhamsted Reservoir a few minutes later.

The tornado in Winsted had estimated maximum winds of 95 mph, uprooting trees and damaging homes over an area of about seven-tenths of a mile. 
Meteorologists have little information about the tornado over the reservoir, which was confirmed from a video. No damage was reported.

Tornadoes already had been confirmed between Beacon Falls and Hamden and between Southbury and Oxford.

Three others hit New York -- two of them striking in Putnam County.

Putnam County Executive Mary Ellen Odell joined WCBS 880’s Michael Wallace Thursday. She said people are back on the roads to get necessary supplies, and the county is distributing dry ice and water.

Meanwhile, NYSEG said it hopes to have power back to 90 percent of customers by 7 p.m. Friday, but Odell said that might be a little too optimistic.

“The commissioner of the Bureau of Emergency Services, Ken Clair, and I – we’re kind of looking at each other saying, after what we saw out there yesterday and what we saw today, I don’t think 90 percent is a realistic number. But we always do like to shoot for the best, right?” she said. “I would say more than likely over the weekend, which NYSEG did commit they have crews here all weekend for restoration.”

About 150,000 outages remain across the region after Tuesday's wild weather, including 69,000 in Southbury, Conn. The town is a bucolic and tranquil rural area with plenty of trees for a tornado to devour. 

Gov. Dannel Malloy says it could take several days to restore power.

Over in Brookfield, which was devastated by a macroburst, First Selectman Steve Dunn said, "We could be two, three, four weeks before we get everything cleared. I think we will have the power back, that's one of our goals, within the next three or four days. That's a guess based on what we are looking at right now. I could be wrong. The last time we had a storm, some of our people were without power for 14 days."

Dunn said this will be a longterm problem.

"This issue is not going to go away in five days so we're going to need that support over the next month or two because we're going to have a heck of a lot of expense here," Dunn said.

Towns are setting up shelters and potable water stations. For residents with wells, no power means no water.

The state is sending in extra resources to hard hit areas and Eversource has brought in additional utility crews from New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

Two people in New Fairfield and Danbury were killed in separate accidents when trees fell on their trucks, including a woman whose 3-year-old child escaped injury.

In New York, an 11-year-old girl was killed when a large tree toppled onto the car she was in on Robinson Avenue in Newburgh. Police said the girl and her mother had arrived home and were unloading the car when strong winds knocked the tree onto the vehicle. The mother suffered minor injuries. Elsewhere in Orange County, a woman was killed when a tree fell onto her car around 6 p.m. The storm was also blamed for the death of an 80-year-old woman in Ramapo, Rockland County.

(© 2018 WCBS 880. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)