Shrewsbury Lucky In Hurricane Sandy Aftermath

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A tree was uprooted at 4 Crimson Drive in Shrewsbury.
A tree was uprooted at 4 Crimson Drive in Shrewsbury. Photo Credit: Dianne Polito

SHREWSBURY, Mass. - Compared to some surrounding towns, Shrewsbury appears to have gotten off light in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

The storm that devastated areas in New York and New Jersey had disrupted Shrewsbury schools, businesses, and municipal services on Monday. By Tuesday, schools were open, electricity and cable was restored, and the special Town Meeting was scheduled to go on as planned.

Shrewsbury Fire Chief Jim Vuona said Monday was relatively quiet.

“Most people stayed off the roads. We did have a tree come down on one house on Spring Street. For the most part, people used the [hurricane] information to protect themselves and stay out of harm's way,” he said.

Shrewsbury Electric and Cable Operations began getting calls about power outages shortly before 5 p.m. Monday, according to SELCO Marketing Manager Jackie Pratt.

Power outages peaked at about 550 out of 14,000 SELCO households. Pratt said most electricity was restored by 11 p.m. Monday, with only one or two homes left without power Tuesday morning.

About 300 homes lost cable when a node went down around 1 a.m. Nearly all customers had their cable up and running by Tuesday morning.

“Luck has a lot to do with it,” Pratt said. “Northborough had some serious damage, and they were only a town away. That could have easily happened here.”

Pratt said advanced warning about the hurricane made it easier for SELCO to prepare for outages, but noted that linemen still risked life and limb to make repairs in pitch back hurricane conditions.

Shrewsbury Public Library closed at 5 p.m. Monday and canceled all events. The rest of the week's events, including the Halloween-themed “Week of Screams,” will go on as planned.

Parks and Recreation programs were canceled Monday, but director Angela Snell said no special events had been scheduled, and the rest of the week's programs should be uninterrupted. As of Tuesday afternoon, Dean Park was still closed as crews cleared debris.

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