Giuseppe Valiante, The Canadian Press
Published Saturday, November 2, 2019 1:07PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, November 2, 2019 4:56PM EDT
MONTREAL — The variety of Quebecers with out power following Friday’s intense storm dropped steadily all through the day Saturday, as lots of of hydro workers labored to restore damaged electrical poles and downed power traces across the province.
As of Saturday afternoon, about 340,000 customers had been with out power, down from a excessive of almost 1 million the night time earlier than, when an autumn storm unleashed heavy rain and punishing winds of as much as 100 kilometres an hour across a lot of southern Quebec.
Quebec Premier Francois Legault stated many of the properties and companies that misplaced power would seemingly be reconnected to the grid by Sunday night time, however warned that enormous swaths of the province would proceed to be at midnight into subsequent week.
“There are still three regions that are problematic and where we think it could take longer than Sunday,” Legault advised reporters, pointing to the Monteregie space across the metropolis of Sherbrooke, the Laurentians and Lanaudiere sectors north of Montreal, and the Beauce area south of Quebec City.
Legault stated one individual has died because of the storm — a 63-year-old man who was struck by a falling tree on Friday morning in Bromont, about 85 kilometres east of Montreal.
“I want to offer all my condolences to the family and friends of the man from Bromont,” Legault stated.
Eric Martel, president of Hydro-Quebec, stated about 1,000 hydro workers had been working to restore 250 hydro poles knocked out throughout the storm. He stated about 300 power traces had been downed across the province, and a couple of,500 a great deal of branches, bushes and different vegetation affecting the distribution system wanted to be cleared away.
Hydro-Quebec usually sends staff to different provinces and U.S. states to assist restore power, Martel famous, saying that now it is the province’s flip to request help. But few staff from outdoors the province had been accessible, as a result of areas round Quebec had been additionally hit onerous by the robust winds and rain.
Still, Martel stated, contractors from New Brunswick had arrived to assist, and 40 groups from Detroit had been anticipated to reach on Saturday afternoon and be able to work by Sunday.
“We are putting in all the effort to bring the situation back to normal as quickly as possible,” Martel stated. “The good news is that by (Sunday night) we should have covered the majority of the blackouts.”
Heavy rain additionally introduced flooding to southern components of the province, however Public Security Minister Genevieve Guilbault stated earlier Saturday she did not know precisely how many individuals had been compelled from their properties as a result of native authorities hadn’t up to date their figures.
Around 250 properties and companies had been evacuated on Friday in Sherbrooke, and about 30 roads had been flooded within the area. The metropolis stated Saturday afternoon that the water ranges of the St-Francois River had receded and other people had begun returning house.
About one million folks had been with out power on the peak of the blackouts, the very best quantity for the reason that 1998 ice storm left 1.4 million properties and enterprise at midnight. But in contrast to in 1998, when transmission traces collapsed, the hydro utility stated the principle community was not affected this time.
Meanwhile, in New Brunswick, about 6,000 customers had been nonetheless with out power on Saturday afternoon after the identical storm system that hit Quebec made its was east. About 52,000 customers had been affected on the peak of the outage throughout Friday’s storm.
According to estimates on the utility’s web site, electrical energy was anticipated to be restored in most areas by late Saturday night.
Power had additionally been largely restored across Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island Saturday, the place outage numbers had been a lot decrease than in New Brunswick.
This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Nov. 2, 2019.