WEATHER: 1,600 crew members ready to help with power restoration

Tree crews wait for the call at a parking lot in Providence. Photo by WPRO's Steve Klamkin.

Kim Kalunian, WPRO News

David Graves, spokesman for National Grid, told WPRO's Buddy Cianci that crews are in place and ready to respond to any outages.

Graves said there are 150 crews of 2 to 4 people located at waiting areas at Twin River, CCRI in Warwick and and Middletown. There are also 150 additional tree crews available should National Grid need them to help with downed trees.

Graves told Cianci that they're not experiencing any outages right now, but would expect to see more when winds pick up later tonight.  However, when winds hit speeds of 40 mph, crews cannot get their buckets in the air, and repairs could be delayed.

He said National Grid is working closely with the Rhode Island Department of Transportation to ensure they can get trucks out even in snowy conditions.

Graves said there are 1,600 crew members that have come into New England to help with the restoration process, all of whom are staying at area hotels. 

Should outages occur, Graces said healthcare facilities like hospitals will be a priority.

Click here for National Grid's Power Outage Map.

For detailed forecasts and up-to-the-minute closings and information, visit our Operation Snowball page.