UPDATE: Power Came Back at 4:26 P.M. on Wednesday, No Recurring Outages Expected

According to Public Relations Manager, Priscilla Gottwald, RMLD, the problem was fixed and power returned at 4:26 P.M.

This article was updated at with information provided by Priscilla Gottwald, Public Relations Manager, RMLD:

Thursday, 10:25 a.m. — According to Priscilla Gottwald, a spokesperson for the Reading Municipal Light Department, power was restored at 4:26 p.m. on Wednesday. 

"There should be no recurring outages," said Gottwald. 

Wednesday, 2:27 p.m.— Patricia Gottwald, a spokesperson for the RMLD, said that power companies are hoping to restore power by 3:30 p.m.

"NSTAR crews in Woburn and National Grid crews in Tewksbury are working on the problem and hope to have the power restored by 3:30 p.m. today," said Gottwald.

According to Gottwald, at approximately 12:46 P.M., while an NSTAR crew was working on a de-energerized transmission line in Woburn, a pole fell on another NSTAR transmission line causing a major power outage.

residents and businesses in Wilmington, Reading, Lynnfield and North Reading fed by this NSTAR transmission line lost power.

Surrounding towns of Tewksbury, Woburn, Stoneham and Billerica were also affected. 

The Reading Police station sent out a message town-wide informing the community of the outage, and also sent out traffic control officers to monitor and deal with the traffic situation.

Kara Deyermenjian October 06, 2011 at 05:59 PM
Reading Police Chief, James Cormier, and officers at the Reading Police Department encourage anyone who is signed up for the alert system who have not been receiving notifications to please contact Reading Police Business Administrator, Andrew Scribner-MacLean, at the Reading Police Department: 781-944-1212.
Priscilla Gottwald October 06, 2011 at 06:59 PM
Hi Frank, Some of us here at RLMD are trying to convince General Manager Vinnie Cameron that this is the way to go. I'll use your comment and the others for supporting our requests. By the way, I'm Priscilla. Thanks for your input. Priscilla Gottwald, PR Manager, RMLD
Frank Keane October 06, 2011 at 09:04 PM
Priscilla, there was an article in the Chronicle today about the Police department being swamped with phone calls regarding the power outage. Twitter could have eliminated many of the calls. Twitter also has a reply feature where people could report problems that occur as a result of the issue and could include pictures, to help prioritize the issue. All this occurs without the need for someone to answer a phone. Just a few more items to help in your justification
Priscilla Gottwald October 07, 2011 at 12:42 PM
I would encourage those who are affected by an electrical outage to call us directly at RMLD - 781-944-1340 - to leave police lines open for their emergencies. Whenever we have an outage to this degree (storms, transmission tower breakdown, etc.), our staff goes into emergency mode and have the most up-to-date information. We're encouraging electronic notification. Thanks, Frank, for your comments, which I will refer to in our meeting next week. Priscilla Gottwald, PR Manager, RMLD
Frank Keane November 01, 2011 at 09:43 PM
Hi Priscilla. Once again there was an opportunity to use Twitter to notify users of the power outage caused by down trees. I am not sure of the value of having a notice on the web site to let people know of the issue since you need power for your router to connect to the internet to get to the website. The outbound calls work if your phone lines are out due to the storm. Twitter is a two way tool. It is hard to understand the reliance on people calling the police department who then notify the light department. The town sends out a message on their new system via phone to let people know they are aware of the problems but since it is an RMLD issue, they do not provide any details on expected fixes. It seems that the use of current free technology could certainly streamline and modernize this process ax well as let the customers know what is happening. I am starting to think this is a generational issue, we have always used the phone, why change.


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