PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — As Duquesne Light crews were joined by their Alabama Power counterparts and hit the roads Wednesday morning, anxious customers were waiting.
At a dialysis clinic on Liberty Avenue, physician’s assistant Maura McGinley says it’s been rough since the power went out.
“We had patients who missed dialysis treatments because of it,” she said. “I had patients who ended up in the hospital because of it.”
Some patients were able to get to another clinic not too far away yesterday but McGinley says those who could not, “when they came in today were fluid overloaded they had trouble breathing their blood pressure was high and they were more unstable today.”
A crew from Duquesne Light got the clinic back on line early Wednesday afternoon and then moved on to Shadyside.
That’s where several businesses have been without power since Sunday afternoon. At the Laundry Factory owner Jerry Montesano has been standing in the doorway, “All we do is turn customers away all day long.”
There was partial power coming into the laundromat so the credit card scanners were working but it wasn’t enough to get the machines going, “there’s not enough voltage coming in.”
Losing a couple thousand dollars a day Montesano says he had no choice but to tell his workers to stay home, “my employees aren’t working. They’ve got bills they’ve got families and we’re calling them off every day.”
When the power went out on Sunday customers clothing was in several washing machines. It took until today to get those machines disassembled enough to disengage the door lock and rescue the clothes.
When the crew arrived from restoring the clinic they took a look at the dangling wire along College Avenue, set up their bucket trucks and went to work. Their efforts weren’t just for the laundromat, that power line also feeds a beer distributor, a Japanese food store, and Soba restaurant.
With crews from all over the eastern United States now helping West Penn Power and Duquesne Light the work it proceeding rapidly. Duquesne Light already has 98 pecent of its customers back on line with the rest expect by midnight. West Penn Power had hoped to get to 95 percent by tomorrow night but instead hit that mark Wednesday afternoon. Both utilities are down to the single customer restorations and West Penn believes that work could continue into the weekend.
West Penn customers still without service can pick up free water and ice at Giant Eagles throughout the area. For the full list, click HERE.