It looked as if Tropical Storm Irene had skipped right over Northport and East Northport on Sunday. According to the Long Island Power Authority's power outage map, Huntington, Fort Salonga, and Commack reported outage numbers in the thousands while, locally, not a single power outage was shown.
As of 6 p.m. Sunday, the power outage map on LIPA's website reported zero outages in this area, in contradiction to the many reports of sweeping outages throughout Northport and East Northport on our Facebook page.
According to LIPA representative Elizabeth Flagler, a glitch in LIPA's computerized reporting system caused the error, though she was unsure of the cause of the glitch.
She added that LIPA's initial outage reports are a combination of computerized field data collections and customer call-ins. However, Northport and East Northport residents who called in on Sunday did not appear to be reflected on the map prior to 6:30 p.m.
At 6:30 p.m. the numbers were up: a staggering 6,614 residences and businesses had lost power in Northport and East Northport.
Neighboring areas reflected outage reports as early as 9 a.m. on Sunday, but, because of the computer system failure, LIPA sent 1500 surveyors to manually assess the outages in Northport-East Northport at 3:30 p.m., which accounts for the nine hour delay.
Flagler said that the reportage delay should not affect repair response times. However, LIPA also said that repair teams are only deployed once survey teams have completed an assessment of the nature and extent of damages.
As of 11:05 a.m. Monday, LIPA's Northport-East Northport power outage map showed another dramatic change in outage reports--a nearly 6,000 drop in outages overnight.
According to residents' reports on our Facebook page, power remains off in large areas of Northport and East Northport. It is unclear what has caused the rapid drop in LIPA's outage numbers.
As of 12:49 p.m., LIPA is still assessing conditions in Northport and East Northport and has not given a time estimate for power restoration, but said that transmission lines and essential hubs such as hospitals will take priority.
LIPA will be updating the outage map on its website twice a day, at 10 a.m. and 10 p.m., with new outage information and restoration updates. To report a power outage call 1-800-490-0075 or 1-631-755-6900.
Patch will update this story as more information becomes available.