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Mangano, Cuomo Criticize LIPA's Response to Superstorm Sandy

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Thursday had a few harsh words for the power authorities.

During a press conference at Cedar Creek Park in Seaford, Mangano said his office has requested from LIPA a bullet-point memo on procedures for getting power turned on in flood areas that they can distribute to residents, but so far the utility has not responded.

Mangano said many residents who live in designated flood zones south of Merrick Road have expressed frustration because of LIPA not making clear the proper process for having electrical systems inspected before power is restored. He also said the utility company has failed to adequately respond to customers in flood areas whose homes did not incur flood damage.

“[LIPA] has to be the ones leading the charge to get the lights on,” said a frustrated Mangano during the press conference held next to an American Red Cross feeding site established at Cedar Creek Park last week.

Cuomo, in a press briefing, called the Long Island Power Authority and other New York power utilities in general "archaic" and "unprepared" for the lashing Hurricane Sandy and winter storm Athena gave the Long Island and New York metropolitan area.

"This is a 1950s system with these utilities that are regulated by the the state, but they are bureaucracies that are in many ways a monopoly," Cuomo said, adding that "it's a system that just doesn't work for New York in an emergency crisis situation."

Power power outages jumped above 220,000 following Wednesday's nor'easter.

Joe Vicali, who lives in a northern section of Seaford in the Levittown School District showed up at Thursday’s press conference and voiced his anger at not having power for 11 days and LIPA’s lack of response to any of his questions.

“They are not picking up their phones," Vicali said. “LIPA has to be held responsible for this."
Mangano said the Merrick Fire Department and some other firefighters in Nassau County have stepped up to the plate to help with the inspection process to help get homes powered up that were not impacted by flooding south of Merrick Road.

He also added that the county’s three town supervisors in Hempstead, North Hempstead and Oyster Bay have been authorized by the county to go directly into LIPA sub stations with outage maps to inform electric crews on what non-flooded homes can have power turned on.

The LIPA press office did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment on Mangano’s criticism levied against the utility.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo also lashed out at LIPA in a press conference Thursday saying they were "unprepared" for Superstorm Sandy as well as the nor'easter that struck the area Wednesday.

Story by Andrew Coen and Henry Powderly
tjbmsg November 08, 2012 at 05:52 PM
it goes well beyond not being responsive for homes that suffered water damage there is significant work that needs to be done to ready the house for being powered. There is zero coordination here. Every person for themselves. The town hempstead did publish a list of licnesed contractors, most who are not available and do not return calls. There is also many reports of contractors price gouging on repairs. It would not be all that difficult to have individual towns/cities to contract with licensed folks in teams to go door to door to inspect AND repair the damage so houses could be powered up. This is not rocket science--changing out panels, circuits and plugs could be done more efficeintly and cost effectively. As it stands each person is on there own. The contractor needs to make individual runs to individual houses and they need to have the gas to make the trip. very inefficient and very poor
Curt November 08, 2012 at 10:41 PM
How about LIPA giving residents some idea of when they're sending their inspection teams around? My electrical panel and meter was not touched by the storm, but w/o heat I can't stay there all the time. I missed the team =, or whoever it was who stuck a notice in my door. Can't get any of them on the phone to find out when they're coming back and now I understand that if I'm not home the next time, they'll take the meter. Give me a clue as to when and I'll be there.
tjbmsg November 09, 2012 at 03:26 AM
How about they call, email. Or text the area they they are going to canvass a day ahead of time so people can be there. This is basic common sense. They seem to not have the ability to think thru any process
wikyjalo November 09, 2012 at 07:52 AM
And where is our City Managers outrage at what is going on?
mildred petrassi November 09, 2012 at 02:29 PM
ENOUGH ALREADY......TURN THE POWER ON. All we've been hearing are excuses; save them for later. No one is LB Lido Beach, Point Lookout care if they (Mario's kid and Mangano); are upset with LIPA. FIRE THEM GET ANOTHER COMPANY, GIVE THE PEOPLE A CHOICE; meanwhile a little less lip and alot of electric. Our complex has been ready for days; nothing; I rode around LB today; how sad, beyond sad, did run into some LIPA PEOPLE, said most of LB has power. Some of the traffic lights are working; but that's it. It was stopping people and random if they had power; THIS IS A SICK WAY TO LIVE.; i AM NOT PAYING MY LIPA BILL, WHAT WILL THEY DO? turn off my electric
wikyjalo November 09, 2012 at 07:20 PM
Most of Long Beach has power? That's a crock of baloney.

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