Several hundred residents still without power - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Several hundred residents still without power

CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) -

Just over 200 Entergy customers are still without power Monday night, and most of them have been in the dark since Friday.

"We have trees that are in lines," said Entergy Customer Service Manager Clyde Mitchell. "We have poles that are broken that we are repairing. That's the cause for the outages today."

At first check Monday morning, over 500 Entergy customers still did not have power, including businesses like Johnnie's Paint and Body Shop.

"Sunday I made a call to the outage center and told them I needed to be a priority for business for Monday," said shop owner Stanley Caldarera. "The lady assured me that they would put me as a priority."

Caldarera's shop got the lights back just after noon Monday. But he said it was really too late.

"Here again I have customers I told to go back home," said Caldarera. "I have several employees that went back home. Now I'm going to try to get them back over here. So our day has been pretty much disrupted."

When the storms blew through on Friday, 16,000 customers lost power. That number dropped to 8,000 by Saturday afternoon. But the second line of storms pushed the number back up to 14,000, and crews had to stop work for awhile.

"Safety is paramount for our employees," said Mitchell. "They work safely to restore power as quickly and safely as possible."

Many Entergy crews dealt with fallen trees on Monday, including one with a three foot beehive inside.

Fallen trees cause a lot of problems with restoring power, especially if they've fallen on the power lines. Companies must first come in and ground the wires, the tree must then be cut away, and then the power can be restored.

"Our guys has been working tirelessly into the night to restore power to our customers," said Mitchell. "We want to thank our customers also, for their patience, because we try to restore power as quickly and as safely as possible."

Caldarera hopes Entergy takes this storm as a lesson learned.

"I know it's hard for Entergy, and I understand that," said Caldarera. "But the thing is, they got to understand where businesses come from."

Entergy hopes to restore power to all of their customers at some point this evening...

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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