EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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October 31, 2012

Granite Staters grateful damage wasn't worse

Many still left powerless after Sandy

(Continued)

The Ingram Senior Center was open to anyone who needed a break or to charge cellphones or other electrical devices, Emanuelson said.

Stores see long lines

Stormy-weary residents stopped off at convenience stores and doughnut shops yesterday morning to warm up or get gas for cars or generators.

Steady lines of customers could be seen at gas pumps throughout the area, including Hess Express in Salem.

Ken Wright, 67, of Derry, who was filling up a gas can, said he had to travel to Salem because the stores near his Goodhue Road home were closed because they didn’t have power.

Don Murphy, 45, of Windham was filling his own 5-gallon gas cans nearby.

“Who knows how long it will be out?” he said. “We’re always hit in Windham.”

A crew from Xfinity also stopped at the store. Worker Ken Curtis, 45, of Salem said he and a fellow employee were busy restoring service in Salem before heading to Sandown, Hampstead and Plaistow.

Officials in some of the area’s smaller towns were just glad they were spared major damage. But, they still had hundreds of residents without power.

Around 75 percent of Atkinson was without power yesterday. While the police station was running on a generator, even that failed briefly. While the station was offline from about 4 to 9 p.m. Monday, all calls were sent to and answered by Plaistow police.

About 85 percent of Hampstead was still in the dark yesterday, but police Chief Joseph Beaudoin said life was returning to normal.

“We’ve got a great group of residents who really take care of each other,” he said. “Right now, they’re out. They’re doing well. They’re locating gas, they’re locating food in the restaurants that are open.”

Plaistow saw a much lower percentage of residents in the dark a day after the storm.

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