Islip officials are growing increasingly frustrated with the lack of communication from the Long Island Power Authority as the Town seeks to help restore power to residents that have been without for 11 days.
According to outage figures from LIPA as of 11 a.m. Thursday, 12,131 customers across Islip remain without power. While a small percentage of those are to homes that were devastated by Hurricane Sandy and cannot currently have power restored for safety reasons, Town officials said most LIPA customers across Islip who are still in the dark are able to have power safely turned back on.
“We have completed 8,500 assessments over the past five days,” said Inez Birbiglia, an Islip Town spokesperson. “A majority of homes that sustained damage (water, tree or other) can have power safely restored. We have given that information to LIPA, but they have done nothing with it.”
Adding to the frustration, she said, is that LIPA representatives working in neighborhoods are unaware that information from Islip about what homes are safe for power restoration has already been provided to the power company.
“We have been giving LIPA that information every 10 minutes in real time and by fax,” Birbiglia said. “But we’re not sure what LIPA is doing with this information. It’s clear they are not communicating it to their people in the field.”
She noted that Town officials did meet with LIPA on Wednesday and had a spirited conversation with power company officials. Birbiglia added that LIPA officials said they would work to improve communication with field personnel.
LIPA officials were not immediately available for comment.