A day after Hurricane-turned Tropical Storm Irene knocked out power in thousands of area homes and businesses Sunday, many still woke up Monday morning in the dark, especially in Wantagh and North Wantagh.
Wantagh and North Wantagh have taken the brunt of the hit in terms of Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) power outages in the area with 8,300 homes and businesses affected out of 10,878 customers served, according to the utility’s storm center website update at 11:05 a.m. Seaford has not been nearly as affected with 550 outages reported late Monday morning out of 5,511 customers served, according to LIPA.
One of the thousands of local residents affected by the outages is Bret Callahan, whose home in the Wantagh Woods area lost power at 7:30 a.m. Sunday. Callahan called LIPA Monday morning and was told it could be up to six days until his power gets restored. On Monday morning, he was at a packed Starbucks in Levittown trying to get work done on his laptop along with many other area residents who are stuck without power.
“The hardest part for me is the cold shower,” said Callahan who added that a transformer blew out on his block Saturday night and a tree fell on his neighbor’s house across the street Sunday morning, likely exacerbating the outage situation in the Wantagh Woods area. “You don’t realize the importance of power until you don’t have it.”
A North Wantagh family of four on Barberry Road, which does not wish to be identified, have already been without power for two days. After being told it could be another 48 hours until power is restored, the family, which includes two infants, is now seeking shelter at a relative's house in Bellmore.
Overall in Nassau County, there were 148,206 without power late Monday morning, according to LIPA, including 57,580 in the Town of Hempstead. In Nassau and Suffolk County as well as the Rockaway Peninsula combined, 368,097 LIPA customers were without power Monday morning out of 1.1 million.
LIPA issued a statement on its website Monday morning saying that "damage assessment efforts will continue today" and "full restoration is expected to take days." The utility also added that they "are unable to provide an estimated restoration time for most customers."
LIPA could not be reached for comment on the significant power outage problems being experienced in Wantagh and Seaford.