For Immediate Release - November 02, 2011

AG to Request Formal Investigation into Storm Response

Statement from Attorney General Martha Coakley:

“We have had a number of recent storms that have caused widespread outages and problems for customers. It is essential that utilities are properly prepared for these storms and are able to quickly respond to outages, all while maintaining strong lines of communication with local officials and customers.

Following the October 29 storm, our office has received a variety of complaints regarding the power restoration process by the utilities. Right now, the utility companies’ focus should be on getting power back online for individual households and maintaining strong communications.  However, once power has been restored throughout the Commonwealth, we will petition the Department of Public Utilities to initiate a formal investigation into the companies’ restoration efforts, including their preparedness for this storm as well as their communications with local officials and customers in its aftermath.”

As ratepayer advocate, Attorney General Martha Coakley has the authority to request a formal investigation by the DPU into the utilities’ storm response.  An investigation into last December’s storm resulted in a two million dollar settlement with National Grid.  A formal investigation is already underway into the preparedness and response in connection with Tropical Storm Irene.