Power restored to more than half of 500,000 PECO customers in dark

Feb. 7, 2014 at 8:13 AM

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Power was restored early Friday to about 420,000 customers in Pennsylvania affected by this week's ice storm, leaving 295,000 without service, PECO Energy said.

Based on current conditions and the extent of damage experienced from Tuesday's storm, the majority of customers should have power restored by Friday night, PECO said in a release. Customers in more heavily damaged areas will be without service until Sunday.

More than 5,000 PECO employees, contractors and workers from utilities as far away as Arkansas, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio and New Brunswick, Canada, as well as PECO's Chicago-based sister utility ComEd, were working to repair damage and restore service to customers, the utility said.

On the West Coast, one person was killed and several others injured in a 28-car crash on Interstate 5 in Washington after a winter storm pushed in from the Pacific Ocean, KPTV-TV, Portland, Ore., reported.

In the Baltimore area, about 19,000 customers were without power early Friday, Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. said on its website.

A powerful snowstorm moved out of the Midwest Wednesday and into the Northeast Thursday, leaving a wintry mess in its wake. The storm dumped 13 inches of snow in parts of Kansas, more than 10 inches in parts of Massachusetts and 4 inches in New York, CNN said.

A storm moving across the country from the West Cost is forecast to bring snow to eastern United States this weekend, but meteorologists said it isn't expected to be as problematic as the midweek storm, CNN said.

Meanwhile, the central United States was experiencing more cold, with wind chill warnings or advisories posted in more than a dozen states, CNN said. Highs are expected to be 20 to 40 degrees below average. In Chicago, the wind chill as rush hour got into full swing was 20 below, WBBM-AM, Chicago, reported.

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