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Storm closed roads, caused power outages and flooding

An overnight storm on Sunday brought heavy wind and rain to the region, resulting in flooding, downed power lines that closed roads and left many Eversource customers without power Monday morning — including more than 1,000 people in Ledyard.

More than 6,000 Connecticut customers were without power Monday morning, according to Eversource, but that had dropped to 270 at 5:17 p.m.

On Monday morning about 8:30, the utility company was reporting 1,038 outages in Ledyard, 593 in Stonington, 21 in New London and 35 in East Lyme. Much of the power was restored later in the morning and afternoon. As of 5:17 p.m. Monday, East Lyme had 127 customers without power, North Stonington  66 and Stonington and Lyme 20 each. Ledyard outages had been reduced to just 9.  

Norwich Public Utilities reported a few scattered outages Monday morning. About 100 customers lost power in the area of Quarto Road when a tree limb fell across wires at 7:30 a.m. About 30 NPU customers in the area of Lillibridge and Victoria roads and Pacemaker Avenue lost power at about 7 a.m. and were restored by 9:30 a.m.

Mathewson Mill Road was closed in Ledyard near the Preston line while downed wires lay across the roadway, according to the Ledyard Police Department. The traffic signal at Colonel Ledyard Highway and Center Groton Road was also out on Monday morning. In North Stonington, downed power lines near the intersection of Route 184 and Boombridge Road caused some road closures.

East Lyme Police Chief Mike Finkelstein said Monday morning that Atlantic Avenue was closed between Bayview Road and Columbus Avenue from the flooding. Most of the deluge began about two hours prior to high tide.

Joe Bragaw, East Lyme's public works director, said a girls' weekend at an Airbnb rental on Atlantic Avenue culminated with a ride on a town backhoe when the women had to be escorted to dry land Monday morning.

"These things happen, where people are on vacation thinking everything is going to be fine and all of a sudden there's three feet of water and they gotta get out," he said.

With the low-lying road sitting just about a foot above the high tide line as the wet, gusty storm came in from the east, Bragaw said there weren't a lot of options for getting the women out of the house.

"The guys, as they usually do, they figured it out," he said of his highway crew.

He said a lot of the other waterfront homes are vacant over the winter, with the remaining year-rounders accustomed to riding it out until the water goes back where it came from.

As for the backhoe, he described it as an uncommon form of public transportation for beach residents, especially seven women in town for a party.

"Not seven ladies in for the weekend for a party," he said. "It's not your typical Airbnb experience."

Finkelstein said around 4 p.m. there was about 6 inches of flooding still on the ground. The public works department remained on the scene. He said there has also been significant flooding in the parking lot of Cini Park. On North Bride Brook Road, the wind blew down a utility pole Monday morning forcing the closure of the road from after 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., he said.  

Groton Town Police said River Road north of Bindloss Road in Mystic and Poquonnock Road/Route 1 in the area of South Road in downtown Groton were flooded and impassable Monday morning due to the rain and high tide. There was also flooding in downtown Mystic, that closed roads, a common occurence with coastal storms.

City of Groton Police said Shore Avenue was impassable for a  time, and the Eastern Point Beach parking lot was under water.

Day staff writers Kimberly Drelich and Elizabeth Regan contributed to this report.

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