Winter Storm | More than 13,000 households are without electricity

Winter Storm |  More than 13,000 households are without electricity

Hydro-Quebec customers may have to wait a day to be reconnected.


The effects of the storm that swept across Quebec on December 23 are still being felt in Quebec. Thousands of Quebecers are still in the dark and national parks are closed due to extensive damage.

Five days after the storm left thousands of Quebecers in the dark for Christmas, Hydro-Québec is still working to reconnect more than 16,000 customers across the province. Some customers may have to wait until Thursday.

“There is progress because 95% of customers affected by storm-related power outages have found service,” explains Lynn St-Laurent, head of media relations at Hydro-Québec. The remaining 5% said it was very important. »

On Wednesday morning, more than 19,000 Hydro-Québec customers were still in the dark, five days after the storm swept through the province last Friday.

By mid-afternoon, the number had risen to around 13,500.me Saint-Laurent. It is difficult to install very precisely because you have to go to the site to assess the repairs. »

Capitale-Nationale is still the most affected region without electricity with 4,636 customers, followed by Côte-Nord with 1,716 customers. A total of 1,865 people were affected in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, 1,205 in Laurentian, 1,575 in Maurice and 1,010 in Chaudière-Appalaches.

A repair affecting some customers at the same time

The state-owned company has shared its “recovery strategy” in recent days, which it uses to prioritize the most urgent repairs. First, there are places that pose an immediate threat to public safety, such as hospitals. For residential and commercial customers, Hydro-Québec prioritizes repairs first, which will benefit the largest number of users.

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In this logic, for the thousands of Quebecers still without power, necessary repairs now affect a small number of customers at once, and outages in remote areas. “We have teams that will go to the break point on the racket, Mme Saint-Laurent. These are long-standing operations and when repairs are made, not in the thousands we can count [le nombre de clients rebranchés]. »

According to the latest data, 40% of outages represent one to five Hydro-Québec customers at the same time, 22% 6 to 10 customers, 20% 11 to 20 customers, 12% 21 to 50 customers, and 5% 51 customers, among others.

“There are customers who have been without power for a few days and we sympathize and appreciate their patience,” M.me Saint-Laurent. And we are doing everything possible to restore them as quickly as possible. »

National parks are closed

The Association of Outdoor Establishments of Quebec (SEPAQ) announced on December 24 the closure of two of its national parks, Jacques-Cartier near Quebec and Monts-Valins in Saguenay.

Due to the weather, Monts-Valins National Park is closed “indefinitely”, SEPAQ notes on its website. “Daily activities have been suspended and shelter is not accessible. »

In the case of Parc National de la Jacques-Cartier, “The park team is working hard to make all trails accessible in a safe manner, SEPAQ notes. The park will be closed until the situation stabilizes. We will keep you informed of the status of the situation. »

Significant damage was also reported in Parc National du Bic, located near Rimouski in Bas-Saint-Laurent. “Several lanes are closed due to large amounts of fallen trees,” SEPAQ said. Accessible paths are icy and many places have fallen trees obstructing walking. We strongly recommend wearing crampons. »

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Several flights are still delayed or canceled at Montreal’s Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau Airport.

Learn more

  • 1200
    The number of workers employed to repair power outages after the storm

    Lynne Saint-Laurent is Head of Media Relations at Hydro-Québec

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