Irene Bashes Bethel [UPDATED]
Irene Bashes Bethel ~ By Wendy Mitchell
Hurricane Irene hit Bethel hard early Sunday causing over 54% of Bethel residents to lose power.
UPDATE: As of 3:20 p.m. CL&P now reports 56% of Bethel residents without power.
The Bethel Police Department’s dispatcher said many roads in Bethel have downed trees and power wires. The Town of Bethel has dispatched road crews. The dispatcher said the Putnam Park area and Stony Hill areas have been hit hardest.
Bethel resident and First Selectman candidate Kevin Cleary posted this on Facebook: “Did a Bethel drive through. Plumtrees Road closed by down tree at Andersons, Wolfpits closed by down tree and power lines, Gretchen Lane closed by down tree and power lines, Greenwood Ave, one lane by Andrews St., Chestnut Ridge closed by down tree. A lot of small stuff on the roads, be careful when you go out.”
Cleary said by phone: “I saw quite a few trees down on Route 302. Just past Wolfpits the utility pole is snapped. There is a huge tree down on Route 302 and also one on Rockwell that fell across a driveway. Chestnut Ridge and Gretchen Lane are closed and that whole area is pretty bad. Pound Sweet is closed because there is a tree across the road.”
Cleary drove downtown and said that “it didn’t seem too bad” but Food Bag is closed because the power it out. The traffic light in front of Food Bag at the intersection of is out. True Value, Bethel Pizza, Jacqueline’s, Greenwood’s and Molten Java are all open. The Putnam House will open at 3:00 p.m.”
Capri’s Pizza in the Stony Hill area is also open, Bethel resident Chris Strols reported.
Bethel Volunteer Firefighter Patrick Magyar said the Stony Hill Fire Department lost power at 5:00 a.m.and has been running on a generator all day. He also said the Fire Department closed Sky Edge Drive between Ridgedale and Chimney Drive. Greg Menti reported Taylor Ave. is closed.
As of this posting, First Selectman Matthew Knickerbocker could not be reached for comment. Bethel Buzz will update the article when he calls to update us.
CL&P representative Theresa Gilbert said as of 2:50 p.m. 54 % of Bethel residents are without power. She said: “Our first priority is to make the area safe by working with town crews to clear the roads so crews can access the equipment. We will then assess the damage.”
Gilbert said over 800 crews have been sent out. Customers can call 800-286-2000 for an update. CL&P has also added a new service, which allows customers to text their outage and their zip code to 24612. Gilbert said customers can call the 800 number for an update. As of this posting CL&P has no estimate on when power will be restored to the Bethel area.
**Please send storm photos and any information regarding road closures to Wendy Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or feel free to post to Bethel Buzz’s Facebook page.**