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Nor’easter Further Complicates Life In Westbury

Additional 1,600 residents lose power following snowfall, wind gusts

When it rains, it pours – and in the case of the recent nor’easter that hit Westbury late Wednesday evening last week: when it snows, it sticks.

Westbury Village Mayor Peter Cavallaro continued his daily updates via email and Facebook, as he indicated that the nor’easter caused power outages in more homes, while others, who never regained power after Superstorm Sandy, remained in darkness.

“Prior to the nor’easter, we had approximately 700 houses in the village still without power. Unfortunately, as a result of the storm, many houses, including mine, lost power again, and we are now at about 2,300 homes with no power.

“The nor’easter caused a lot of tree damage as a result of the heavy weight of ice and snow on the leaves, causing many limbs to snap and bring down more wires. As of Nov. 8, LIPA was indicating that homes that were without power should anticipate another three to five days, with some outages lasting longer,” said Cavallaro, who noted that information received from line crews on the streets should be regarded as unreliable.

The mayor added that the village continues to work on removing debris from the streets and its code enforcement personnel continue to patrol darkened streets at night to deter mischief and looting.

“So far, we have had no reports of any real problems, but we continue to be vigilant, as should you,” Cavallaro said.

Sanitation pickups are back on schedule, Cavallaro said, and the odd-even gas schedule went into effect on Nov. 9, requiring gas stations to only sell fuel to drivers whose license plates’ last digit correlates with the day of the month. Vanity plates with no digits are considered odd-numbered plates and out-of-state plates were subjected to the same restrictions.

As nighttime temperatures descended into the low 20s last week, County Executive Edward Mangano reminded Westbury residents of the available warming centers in the area, which included the Magnolia Gardens Senior Center, 899 Broadway; the Salisbury Senior Center, 460 Salisbury Park Drive (9 a.m. to 6 p.m.); and the Westbury Senior Center, 360 Post Ave.  (8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.).

While Cavallaro noted that he has been in contact with LIPA “four or five times per day,” he said the village was displeased with the number of workers in the Westbury area.

“We have complained to them that we do not have a larger contingent of crews in the area doing restoration work, but they assure us that they will do so in the coming days and that restoration will be picking up. We do not give credence to these claims and continue to press them.

“On the regular municipal official conference calls that LIPA holds twice a day, the anger and frustration of officials from all over Nassau County is as high as it is for us and our residents. LIPA is not doing a very good job anywhere, but we continue to press for a proper allocation of resources and manpower,” Cavallaro said.

Village residents are reminded to call the code enforcement hotline at 333-1869 or village hall during the day at 334-1700 to discuss any specific incidents or to report an area with storm damage.

“Please call us if you have any concerns that you would like to discuss. If you would like to speak with me, please leave that message and I will call you back. Please pray for and assist those neighbors who are without power. The village will continue to do everything that we can to expedite a return to normalcy,” said Mayor Cavallaro in a phone message sent to village residents.