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On Tuesday morning, 24/7 Wall St. reported that the costs associated with restoring downed power lines and blown transformers caused by the storm are rapidly increasing for utility companies serving the region.
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In New Jersey, 2.33 million customers have been affected by the storm, with the Public Service Enterprise Group’s (NYSE:PEG) PSE&G, FirstEnergy’s (NYSE:FE) Jersey Central Power & Light, and Pepo reporting outages. In New York City, Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED) reported that 1.9 million of its customers, including much of lower Manhattan, had no power. Long Island Power Authority reported more than 900,000 outages, and warned that the power could be out for 7 to 10 days. PECO, a subsidiary of Exelon (NYSE:EXC), reported outages in southeastern Pennsylvania, and more than a third of Connecticut’s population has lost power.
Hurricane Sandy also forced three nuclear power plants to shut down, and put another on alert. How well these plants survive the storm is a test of particular importance for the industry, as the storm follows close behind the crisis in Japan 18 months ago. However, the National Resource Council told Bloomberg Businessweek, “All plants have flood protection above the predicted storm surge, and key components and systems are housed in watertight buildings capable of withstanding hurricane-force winds and flooding.”
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