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Briarcliff Manor Village Manager's Update: Monday

Briarcliff Manor's latest on polling places, Con Edison restoration and, roads and more.

The following is from Briarcliff Manor Village Manager Philip Zegarelli:

1. Polling Locations:  according to WC Board of Elections, Tuesday’s polling locations will remain the same as outlined on your individual voter ID card.  Contact the Board of Elections with any questions at (914) 995-5700.  Polling hours are from 6 AM to 9 PM.

2. Power Restoration:  we are down to a 50% VBM-wide outage … yes, a small consolation to those of you who still do not have power.  We contend and have reported to the NYS and others that VBM has been starved of Con Ed tree and line crews to clear trees on wires (TOWs) but are undertaking our own initiatives. Clearing lines is the single most important aspect of recovery … especially since we are advised of the impending Nor’easter due late Wednesday and into Thursday. Many of the crews you do see (especially the NC “Pike” crews, so far) are working on restoring power and replacing damaged poles.  The VBM is serviced by a series of “electrical loops” that stream electrical power to areas that are in “loops or areas” and then linked together within the grid. The problem is that vital components of several loops are all severely compromised and need to be re-built and reconnected.  We expect that as this occurs sizable areas should be restored with power (we are not stating any change to the current estimate of this coming weekend).  We are pushing for a shorter time line. This is a slow and frustrating process especially when you do not see Con Ed Crews on your own street.  This is especially true in the Holbrook/Scarborough area connector and the Central Drive/Law Road areas - a loop where an electrical pole was pulled out of the ground much like a cork pulled out of a bottle.

3. Opening Roads: five roads still blocked. However, there is a step up in response as out-of-state utility workers have been mobilized throughout the village. A common criticism is that these crews have not been seen in your specific neighborhood. Work is oriented in restringing the 3-phase power (the 3 lines commonly seen on the tops of the poles) to power up the loops with 13 KWatt (13,000) of power. Again, this is why we constantly tell you that electric lines are NOT to be touched. Do not drive, touch or walk over downed wires that may still be live. Do not remove barricades as this causes an additional hazard. Clean-Up: VBM’s regular garbage/recycling schedules continue. These types of services are vital: we are using crews when not devoted to Con Ed or other crews to maintain a smooth level of services. Questions: Call DPW at 941-9105. DO NOT PILE leaves in your streets: keep storm sewers, catch basins and sidewalks free and clear: create separate piles: one for leavesanother for branches and other similar wood debris- limbs are to be cut into manageable sizes.  Keep them separate. Jumbled materials will be bypassed. Spot paving at the Railroad station is being done before the plants close and to prepare for the winter plowing. Parks and Fields.  Officially all parks and fields are still closed.

4. Any Generator requires a Village Permit and electrician’s expertise for hook-up.  You are endangering yourself and your neighbors to do otherwise.  Call the VBM Building Department at 944-2770.

5.  Open areas and extended hours:  We have directed the Library and Community Center to have extended hours. For this week, the library will be open from 10 AM to 10 PM as long as we are able. The library is warm, WiFi friendly and open for re-charging your electronics. The BMFD is looking to have the Central Fire Headquarters this week as a warming center for you to charge and recharge your electronic gear. Contact the VBM PD at 941-2130 for times and details.

Lastly, understand that many out of town work forces are here to restore power for all of us. While it may be tempting to release your frustrations, please do not engage in discussions with Con Ed “Scouts” … (those who man cars are various spots). They are not authorized to convey ETA’s of crews or electrical restoration. Report to me any commentary that might be spread on the phone or in person where “Con Ed is waiting for VBM workers to assist them” in their work. VBM’s DPW is ready and able to assist them but ONLYafter Con Ed completes their own critical role: the de-activations of downed live wires and the removal of TOWs.

Paul November 05, 2012 at 10:28 PM
I must say, the communications of the Village has been underwhelming to say the least. Please consider adding Nixle alerts to your repertoire. I get them constantly from the towns near where I used to live, and they have been very informative. We need this system utilized here - the lack of communication is alarming.
David Leibowitz November 06, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Today I talked to the fire chief and the police. They were polite but had little information to share. Before I retired I was the Archirect on major restoration projects for the State and N.Y.C, therefore I was suprised that the FD nor the Police did not have an advanced schedule from con of where roads were to be impacted by Pike or Con Ed restoration work. I was told that con ed did not share that info until ther crews arrived. Also the grid was not availalble for public viewing. There must be a restoration implementation plan and time line by now. I understand the difficulty of initially assessing the magnitude of the problem but by now there is no excuse except ineptitude for not issuing a defininitve zone by zone schedule. This will allow us to make sensible lodging plans. David Leibowitz

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