NEW YORK - It’s been nearly a week since Tropical Storm Isaias hit New York.
At the peak, tens of thousands of customers lost power. And the clean up is still happening.
Appearing on "Mornings On 1", Con Edison President Tim Cawley said 98 percent of customers are back online. But those two percent that are still sitting in the dark are not happy.
Cawley says restorations in New York City should be finished by Monday morning.
And the 15,000 customers still without power in Westchester County should see it return by Monday evening, with some small scattered outages remaining into Tuesday.
The biggest problem is trees coming down on wires. But Cawley says burying more wires isn’t feasible.
“It would cost about $50 billion with a ‘B’ to underground our entire system. So while we could do that, there’s a balance between cost and the reliability we’d be seeking,” he said.
But he says Con Ed does spend money each year trying to better prepare the city for storms.
“We install sectionalizing devices, put up larger poles, new kinds of cable. The sectionalizing devices basically allow you to limit the amount of customers impacted by a down tree, for example. So without the devices, the amount of customers might be a thousand. If you put the smart switches you might limit to 500 or 250,” said Cawley.
He says that Con Ed is putting about $3 billion a year behind that.