Town and school officials have decided to keep schools closed until at least Monday due to dangerous driving conditions and uncertainty with whether schools will be powered in time. The decision was made during a 9 a.m. meeting at the Emergency Operations Center.
Schools have been closed for a week following Tropical Storm Irene and now will be closed for another week. Superintendent of Schools said she would like to hold classes as soon as possible, proposing to hold classes on Thursday if possible but that proposal was shot down because town officials said the roads still presented such a public hazard that school buses and travel would be dangerous.
Connecticut Light & Power also was at the meeting and said they have four crews in Newtown working Tuesday in the Main Street area, Poverty Hollow and Walnut Tree Hill roads, the company's town liasion Jacqui Borges King.
More crews are expected during the day but officials said they did not want to say how many and when they would arrive until they could be sure the information was correct.
"So there is absolutely no miscommunciation," CL&P's Newtown representative Rich Walsh said.
Ken Bowes, a CL&P vice president who is assigned to this part of the state from Kent to Greenwich, said that crews were traveling from Georgia so officials did not know how long the travel would take.
"We hesitate to give specifics until they arrive," he said.
The company also will not have restoration estimates until Wednesday at the latest, Bowes said.
for utility workers who will be sent to Newtown and Monroe – the hardest hit regions in the southern part of the state.
"This is kind of ground zero as we see it right now," Bowes said.
There are 30 roads that are impassable and hundreds of other roads with wires and branches reducing the number of travel lanes in town, officials said.
"Between now and 5 (p.m.) the goals is to get Poverty Hollow and Hattertown (roads), main drags complete opened, and then we will work in the center of town around Walnut Tree Village," Public Works Director Fred Hurley said of road clearing crews. "Those are the most immediate goals for this morning and for this afternoon."
U.S. Rep. Chris Murphy (D-Connecticut) was to have attended the meeting but was called away due to a family emergency, officials said.
A total of 237 homes and businesses have been brought back in line ever since the height of a historic October storm pounded the town and state Saturday, though that still leaves 95-percent of the town without power.
Newtown Middle School serves as the town shelter. Newtown Youth Academy also regained power and has opened its facilities to the public for free showers. The Municipal Center is another warming area and Masonicare at Newtown, 137 Toddy Hill Road, is on generator but offering showers to the public.
Water is available at Sandy Hook firehouse on Riverside Road.
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