With 98,906 United Illuminating customers still without power a few days after Hurricane Sandy hit Connecticut, a top official is asking for some civility from residents still in the dark.

“Don’t hassle our people in the field,” James Torgerson of UI said in a plea to frustrated residents who have been throwing things and yelling at his crews working to restore power. “They are working 125 percent. They are working 16-hour days.”

About one-third of the company’s customers are still without power. UI serves Bridgeport and Fairfield and other towns predominantly in the southwestern part of the state. Torgerson said UI workers are spread out around their towns and no towns are receiving preferential treatment.

“Our resources are spread out,” Torgerson told reporters Thursday. “We have to rebuild the system.”

Tony Marone, the vice president of UI, echoed these concerns at a separate press conference in Hartford.

“This is unacceptable, it’s uncalled for, and it’s undeserved,” he said, noting that people have thrown eggs and other objects at his crews in two separate incidents.

UI has secured police protection to accompany its workers in Bridgeport, reports the Connecticut Post.

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Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

Jacqueline was CT Mirror’s Education and Housing Reporter, and an original member of the CT Mirror staff, joining shortly before our January 2010 launch. Her awards include the best-of-show Theodore A. Driscoll Investigative Award from the Connecticut Society of Professional Journalists in 2019 for reporting on inadequate inmate health care, first-place for investigative reporting from the New England Newspaper and Press Association in 2020 for reporting on housing segregation, and two first-place awards from the National Education Writers Association in 2012. She was selected for a prestigious, year-long Propublica Local Reporting Network grant in 2019, exploring a range of affordable and low-income housing issues. Before joining CT Mirror, Jacqueline was a reporter, online editor and website developer for The Washington Post Co.’s Maryland newspaper chains. Jacqueline received an undergraduate degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University and a master’s in public policy from Trinity College.

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