WOODBURY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Long Islanders are running out of patience as many are still waiting for their power to return three days after Tropical Storm Isaias hit.
Elderly residents at a Woodbury senior complex were stranded in upstairs apartments Friday, unable to operate lifts to get down. Others were on oxygen with medication going bad.
Woodbury Gardens has over 200 units, and the average age of its residents is in the mid-80s.
The senior residents were at their wits’ end and afraid, wanting to know why a community like theirs isn’t a priority.
“People can’t get out of their apartments, their breathing is horrible, and it seems like they don’t care,” resident Donald Esptein said.
“I have asthma, I have shortness of breath,” one woman said. “This is really unforgivable.”
“Well, none of us have landlines, so how do you call for help if you don’t have a smart phone, landline or charged, internet service,” another man said.
The power came back on Friday, then went off again.
Residents were angry a complex on PSEG Long Island‘s critical care list can’t get answers.
“It’s clear to me that the big issue here is a total destruction of the communication system. It’s just not working at all,” Sen. Jim Gaughran told CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff.
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Communication glitches continued even days after the massive outages.
In Floral Park, 97-year-old Mary Grace Pavone was practically in tears.
“I’m having a lot of trouble. It’s been terrible. I don’t know how long it’s going to last,” she said.
Restoration estimates keep changing. In North Bellmore, an earlier estimate said Thursday. It’s now Sunday, hopefully.
“They knew the storm was coming, they said they were ready, and I feel like I’m back in Hurricane Sandy,” North Bellmore resident Evelyn Schneider said.
For others, the power went back on and then off again.
“Four o’clock this morning, I get up, gone again,” one man said.
“No life alert, we’re just, we’re basically living on a prayer,” one woman said.
PSEG LI says it’s rooting out the causes of its communication glitches that did not happen in previous storms.
“Once we get our customers back, we’re through this restoration, we will take a deep dive and figure out exactly why these systems didn’t work up to our expectations and make improvements going forward,” said Daniel Eichorn, PSEG LI president and chief operating officer.
Eichorn now says the amount of work per job is much greater than average storms.
Power will not be restored to some until late Sunday, possibly even into Monday.
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