About 145,000 Centerpoint customers still don’t have power. The outages are scattered across the region, but are primarily concentrated in heavily forested areas. Centerpoint Spokesperson Alicia Dixon says these are the most difficult cases.
“The work is just very tedious and you’re bringing on smaller numbers of customers. It’s where you have to go into people’s back yards and set poles. You can’t bring bucket trucks back there, you have to do everything by hand. So in the beginning we were bringing on large numbers of customers in a small amount of time. Now we’re bringing on very small numbers of customers for hours and hours of work.”
Hurricane Ike was just over two weeks ago. Despite our collective disbelief, Centerpoint did say all along it would take two to three weeks to restore power.
Dixon says they’re on track for where they thought they would be by this point.
“We’re hopeful that it will be before the end of the week that we will restore power to everyone. And that’s everyone that’s able to receive power. I mean clearly in this 145,000 we have customers that there’s nothing to bring power to, for example in Galveston or parts of the coastal areas that were so severely hit where there might not even be a facility to serve any more.”
Although Centerpoint hasn’t changed their timeline, they have changed what they’re asking customers to do. Dixon says at this point if you don’t have power you do need to call and tell them about it.
“These are cases, again, that are served by transformers that are affecting ten or fewer customers. Or it might be a problem with the individual’s own service drop that leads to the home. So we need to hear from customers at 713-207-2222. We need to hear from you if you still don’t have your power.”
Laurie Johnson. KUHF-Houston Public Radio News.