Report by Paula Antolini, August 11, 2020, 11:26PM EDT
Two hours ago First Selectman Knickerbocker posted a long message in ONE Facebook group ONLY from his personal Facebook page, NOT on the Town of Bethel website. Why is that? Everyone is NOT in that other Facebook group. Isn’t this out of protocol? As of this hour, the message is NOT on the Town of Bethel website.
It seems there is a heavy war going on between Knickerbocker and Eversource, and he said in part, “Since this is the 5th major storm I’ve been through, I think I know what’s happening, even if the Eversource customer service team does not.”
He is asking for a “favor” from residents that they NOT post outage complaints to him on Facebook or Twitter, but instead he suggests contacting Eversource directly, or report outages to his email address “so the emergency management team can cross check it,” he said, “We will forward the info to our Eversource contact. We cannot do that with Facebook post or messages. The email address is Firstselectman@Bethel-ct.gov.”
VIEW KNICKERBOCKER”S AUG. 11th MESSAGE IN FULL BELOW, shared 2 hours ago in a Facebook group ONLY:
I need to ask a favor. Many of you are posting on Facebook, as well as reaching out to me on Facebook Messenger and Twitter, about still being without power, even though your neighbors all have theirs. Some of you have posted that you’ve even logged on to the Eversource website to check on your status and been informed that there are no known outages in your area. Since this is the 5th major storm I’ve been through, I think I know what’s happening, even if the Eversource customer service team does not.
As we get to the tail end of the restoration process, sometimes the Eversource crew will reconnect a neighborhood, but not notice that a smaller “side tap” or side circuit has a broken line or tripped breaker. They will leave the neighborhood thinking everyone is reconnected without realizing a few homes are still dark. Sometimes the problem is a damaged service line to the house itself.
So here is the favor: if this has happened to you, please don’t post these on Facebook or send them to me on FB messenger. There are too many threads to follow and we can’t afford to miss your report. What I would like you to do instead is the following two steps:
1) Report it as a “new” outage on the Eversource site, or call it in to the 800 line. If they say there are no outages in the area, tell them you know that but the crew left and you are still out.
2) Report it to my email address so the emergency management team can cross check it. We will forward the info to our Eversource contact. We cannot do that with Facebook post or messages. The email address is Firstselectman@Bethel-ct.gov.
Thank you. Your cooperation with this will help us.