Across the state, more than 237,000 utility customers are without power. In SouthCoast, about 22,000 are without power, according to Eversource.
The company urges customers to always stay clear of downed wires and to report them immediately to 9-1-1. They can report an outage at www.eversource.com, or by calling 800-592-2000. Those who signed up for the company’s two-way texting feature can send a text to report an outage and receive outage updates as they happen.
“This has been a long, trying two weeks for our customers and we appreciate their understanding as we once again work continuously to restore power to all those affected by this latest round of severe winter weather,” said Eversource Vice President of Electric Field Operations Doug Foley. “This will be painstaking work for our crews especially on Cape Cod, the South Shore and South Coast, where the damage and outages are extensive. Our crews and support staff are doing a tremendous job responding to the severe winter weather since it began early this month and will continue to work around-the-clock to get power restored to every last customer affected by this storm as quickly as possible.”
New Bedford Fire Chief Michael Gomes said they have been straight-out responding to downed power lines on Tuesday. Between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m., he said the NBFD had over 100 calls for service and 90 percent of those were for downed power lines.
Also, firefighters responded to two incidents where people were trapped in elevators when power went out, including one at Melville Towers.
There were no fires. "Just another day at the office, run of the mill storm," he said, praising the men and women in the NBFD.
The Rochester Council on Aging has been open since 11 a.m. as a shelter. There are about 18-20 cots and people are encouraged to bring their own pillows and blankets, said Lorraine Thompson, outreach worker at the Council on Aging.
“Get warm; have a meal,” Thompson said. The COA is serving home cooked meals for the most part, she said, although she noted the corn chowder was all gone Tuesday afternoon.
“We have hot coffee,” she noted. Several people have visited the center to eat and to recharge their phones, she added. Pets are not allowed.
If the power doesn’t come back on in certain areas of town and people visit to stay the night, the shelter will stay open, Thompson said. According to the Eversource outage map, Rochester has 1,423 power outages.
She advised those who are looking for transportation to the shelter to call the Rochester Police Department dispatch at 508-763-5112.
Westport had a foot of snow as of 2 p.m., resulting in trees falling down and blocking roadways and causing wires to come down, knocking out power, according to Detective Jeff Majewski.
"We have probably had a dozen" trees come down across roadways, he said. "Even on Route 88, the state highway." There were two instances where trees came down on Route 88 both around the Briggs Road intersection about 9 a.m. — one on the north side, the other on the south side.
Police have shutdown roadways for short periods of time until the trees could be cut and removed from the roadways, he said.
The weight of the heavy, wet snow has caused power lines to come down, he said.
And while neither Dartmouth or Fairhaven police have not seen much in the way of traffic, Westport has. Majewski said the motorists are making difficult to plow the roads.
Mother Nature and first responders are in a foot race in Fairhaven with trees and limbs falling and blocking roadways and power lines coming down, said Lt. Kevin Kobza, whose promotion from sergeant became official Monday morning. The roads in town are "not great" and the DPW is trying to keep pace with the storm.
"We can even get ahead of it. We're just trying to keep up with it," Kobza said.
It's the same situation in Acushnet and Mattapoisett, he said. "It's been the same all day, all over town. We share a (radio) frequency with Acushnet and Mattapoisett and it has been the same with them."
About 9:40 a.m., a live wire with flames came down and was across a homeowner's driveway on Spring Street, he said. The wire was covered with snow and concealed from view so police dispatched an officer there until Eversource could deactivate the line.
There was another report about 10:20 a.m. where a tree came down on Bridge Street, taking a wire with it, and there was a tree in the road on Alden Road, he said.
In Dartmouth, it is a case of trees, branches and wires all being down from the high winds, said Detective Kyle Costa, a spokesman for the Dartmouth Police Department.
The tree limbs, in many cases, have landed on power wires and caused "sporadic outages," he said.
More than 3,000 people are without power, according to Eversource. Across SouthCoast, more than 20,000 are without power.
Motor vehicle crashes, though, are at a minimum. "Apparently, people have heeded the warning and stayed off the roads," he said. "Traffic is very, very light."
Power to the lights at Faunce Corner and State roads went out about 12:30 p.m., he said. "We have been having problems with that for the last week," he said.
Costa advises motorists to treat situations like that as if was "a four-way stop" and come to a complete stop before proceeding through the intersection.
"It has been pretty good and I'm hoping it stays that way," Costa said.
A shelter at Elizabeth Hastings Middle School, 30 School St. in Fairhaven, including at least 50 cots, has been open since 5 a.m., but no one has come yet, officials said.
“We’re offering rides if anyone needs a ride to the shelter,” said Fire Chief Timothy Francis.
Through social media, officials advised bringing snacks, cell phones and chargers, necessary medications and nebulizer machines and some games to stay entertained. Pets, however, are not allowed.
The Fairhaven police and fire stations have lost power and are running on generators, Francis noted.
Those looking for assistance to a shelter should contact the Fire Department and Police Department business lines: 508-994-1428 / 508-997-7422.
Monday night, 26 people accessed the Sister Rose House overflow shelter, according to Program Manager Ray Duarte.
As of 11 a.m. Tuesday, roughly 45 people were in the soup kitchen. “We have been fortunate to be able to serve lunch meaning it’s business as usual,” Duarte said in an email.
The shelter can set up 30 cots because that’s what the occupancy permit allows, however, people aren’t turned away past that number, he said. The overflow of people would have to sit at tables.
“We also have been blessed with all the food and donations right through the whole season,” Duarte said. “The guests have been pleasant and helpful with setting up cots, shoveling snow, and helping serve food.”
Duarte also said tonight will mark the 60th time this season that the shelter has opened, compared to the shelter opening 43 times last year. “So far it’s looking like the overflow will be opened for the next 5 days to say the least unless the forecast changes,” he added.
Plows around the city eclipsed their eighth hour of clearing New Bedford’s roadways, according to the mayor’s office.
Crews began clearing snow at around 4 a.m., which was later than what was expected. The precipitation began as rain and changed to snow. Accumulation began at around 4 a.m. according to a spokesperson for the mayor.
Pre-treatment wasn’t laid down before the snow arrived because of the forecasted rain.
Anecdotally, the city has seen more down branches and wires in the northern portions of the city.
As of noon, the city reported 235 instances of power outages. That number was down form 375 at 10 a.m. Eversource crews continue to work on restoring power to anyone who has lost it, according to a city spokesperson.
So far the storm hasn’t produced white-out conditions, which would force the plows to stop until visibility improves.
The conditions were poor enough to close the New Bedford Regional Airport.
Vessels steamed into the port Monday night and early Tuesday morning to avoid being at sea during the winter storm, according to the Director of the New Bedford Port Authority Ed Anthes-Washburn.
He said he believed the only vessels from New Bedford not in the port were fishing in southern waters safe from the storm’s affects.
The third nor’easter in two weeks has affected the port’s landings, which are already low due to NOAA’s groundfishing ban.
Last Friday, seafood buyers from 11 countries toured the Port of New Bedford, but storms earlier in the week prevented any landings at BASE New England Seafood Auction.
The Coast Guard advised mariners along the coasts of Rhode Island and Massachusetts to exercise caution from Monday night through Tuesday. It also warned against reductions in visibility.
“Operation for any craft in the maritime environment will be dangerous,” a release by the Coast Guard said.
The agency warned against wind gusts of 45 to 60 knots and seas exceed 20 feet on Tuesday.
Coast Guard Sectors Boston and Southeastern New England contacted marinas and facilities across the region to ensure pre-storm precautions were made ensuring vessels were secured.
In a storm in early January, a Carlos Rafael vessel seized by the government broke from from its ties. A Roy Boys tug helped secure it back in place.
The Coast Guard Cutter Spencer, a 270-foot cutter homeported in Boston, will be ready to respond to offshore search and rescue emergencies if needed during the storm. However, with extreme conditions, some Coast Guard assets may have limited ability to respond to vessels in distress, the agency said.
More than 10,000 Eversource customers are without power across SouthCoast. The hardest hit areas are Wareham and the tri-towns (Rochester, Marion and Mattapoisett). Police and fire crews are hopping this morning with reports of downed trees and lines.
Around 9:30 a.m., a tree came through the roof of a home on Haskell Circle in Middleboro. The resident wasn't injured but was shaken by the experience.
The power has been flickering for the past hour at The Standard-Times building at 25 Elm St. in New Bedford.
To report an outage, visit https://www.eversource.com/nstar/reportanoutage.
Good morning, SouthCoast. I hope you're safe and warm at home as the region braces for its third nor'easter in two weeks.
Streets are already covered in snow even as plows do their best to keep the roadways clear. The wind is picking up and making it difficult to see even if you're walking to work.
About an inch of snow has fallen so far. It's a thick, heavy snow. The bottom layer has more of a slushy consistency than snow.
For the most part, the streets of New Bedford are empty as many residents are taking the advice of city and state officials and remaining home during the storm.
On my short walk to work, I didn't see a single non-plow west of Route 18. As for Routes 6 and 18, there are cars, but only sparingly and obviously less volume than a typical Tuesday.
In speaking with city officials Monday night, the main concern was when the snowfall reaches its peak combined with strong winds, which could create blizzard conditions. The conditions could become so bad that they would have to pull the plows off the road to ensure their safety. At that point, during the highest amount of snowfall, there may not be plows on the road. If that happens, the snow removal falls behind the storm and it's difficult to catch up.
Some officials wondered if offices would re-open Wednesday.
City CEO Air Sky said the about $30,000 remained in the city's snow removal budget. He expected the cost of this storm to surpass that by a wide margin.
Here comes the snow, SouthCoast.
With spring less than a week away, we're waking up to a roaring nor'easter that's expected to dump up to 19 inches of snow by this evening.
The region is under a winter storm warning and blizzard conditions are likely. The morning commute will be especially hard with 1 to 3 inches of snow falling per hour, not to mention blowing and drifting snow.
Schools, libraries and government offices are closed across SouthCoast, too.
For updates on road and traffic conditions, drivers can:
Dial 511 before heading out onto the roadways and select a route to hear real-time conditions.
Visit www.mass511.com, a website which provides real-time traffic and incident advisory information, access to traffic cameras, and allows users to subscribe to text and email alerts for traffic conditions.
Download MassDOT’s GoTime mobile app and view real-time traffic conditions before setting out on the road.