Oak Lawn plans pair of meetings on power outages
BY BOB RAKOW Correspondent March 19, 2013 6:28PM
Updated: April 21, 2013 6:34AM
In the wake of a recent power surge that caused an estimated $25,000 worth of damage to appliances and electronics in dozens of Oak Lawn homes, village and ComEd officials will hold two public meetings in April.
ComEd has blamed the March 9 power outage and subsequent surge on a downed power line and a raccoon that got into a transformer. Trustee Alex Olejniczak (2nd) said in a letter to residents that the utility is not accepting responsibility or liability for damages.
Olejniczak said he is frustrated that outages repeatedly have plagued certain areas of the village.
The meetings are to be held at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. April 10 in the auditorium at village hall, 9446 S. Raymond Ave.
Most of the damage from the March 9 surge occurred in the northeast section of the village, in a neighborhood roughly bounded by 49th and 52nd avenues between 87th and 93rd streets, Olejniczak said. However, some homes in the area bounded by Central and Cicero avenues and 87th and 95th streets also were affected.
Residents received Olejniczak’s letter this week notifying them of the meeting.
A downed power line near 91st Street and Cicero Avenue and a raccoon that got into a transformer behind Freshline Foods, 5355 W. 95th St., are being blamed for the outage, ComEd officials said.
Olejniczak said about 50 residents experienced damage to appliances and electronic equipment. He said ComEd was investigating and that the village expected a comprehensive report.
“In the event that the report reveals fault, ComEd has instructed residents to thoroughly and quickly fill out a claims form detailing all damaged equipment,” village manager Larry Deetjen said.
About 24 residents attended a March 13 meeting at village hall to file claims.
The April 10 meeting will be the first with ComEd in 18 months, said Olejniczak, who has called for meetings with the company for several months. He said his frustration with ComEd extends beyond the most recent outage.
“What’s bothering me most is (outages) continue to happen,” he said. “Why is it happening in particular areas? My true sense of frustration is dealing with ComEd.”