State of emergency declared in storm aftermath

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(Host) Governor Jim Douglas has declared a state of emergency for all of Vermont to help deal with the aftermath of Sunday and Monday’s storm.

VPR’s Nina Keck has more.

(Keck) The governor’s emergency order allows Vermont to expedite the arrival of utility crews from other states and Canada to assist with restoring power. Thousands are still without power across Vermont while towns in Rutland County appear to have been hardest hit by the storm. Mellie Flynne of Brandon described her town this way.

(Flynne) “It’s bad all over. It’s sort of like a little ghost town around here unless people do have generators. There have been power lines down on the street. There’s a tree down and there’s a telephone pole sort of holding it up just down the street. I talked to a woman on Park Street. She had a tree come down in her back yard and do a number on one of her out buildings. And she has no power and her car is locked in her garage because it’s an electric door. My husband works in Ludlow and it took him an hour to get to Rutland yesterday because he had to go down Route 7. He had to turn around and come back. And then he tried Corn Hill Road in Pittsford. And he had to turn around and come back. He saw a tree in Pittsford while he was driving and it came down on someone’s house. So it was a pretty hairy ride for him.”

(Keck) While the storm hit Brandon hard, she says neighbors have been helping each other out.

(Flynne) “{We’ve walked up and down the neighborhood and talked to various people. And I think pretty much it’s a resourceful crowd. People do have chain saws if they need them. A guy across the street – I saw that he jerry rigged a really nice little plasticed in part of his porch so that he could put his grill out there and cook safely outside. So people are coming up with ways to deal with it. I’m very thankful that the temperature is not as bad as it could be, say in February so that we’re not dealing with freezing pipes.”

(Keck) Nellie Flynne says she’s hopeful she may get power back by Thursday.

For Vermont Public Radio, I’m Nina Keck.

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