Race to Get Power Back On As Temps Drop

Utility crews from several states scramble to restore electricity for millions of customers.
3:00 | 11/01/12

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Transcript for Race to Get Power Back On As Temps Drop
And, what about the race to turn on heat and light for more than 4 million people? Tens of thousands of workers are out on the job, including those who are rushing in to help from across the country. And abc's ron claiborne reports on their race against time and temperature. Reporter: It's a massive effort for a massive problem. 64,000 utility workers in a dozen states working around the clock to get the power on. In remote areas of appalachia and from ohio well into new england, it's a race against time, as temperatures drop into THE 30s IN PLACES. It's cold. It's dark. We know this is a big deal. We know it's cold out. We know it's going to rain in a few days. We know we need to get lights on as quickly as we possibly can. Reporter: Getting the lights on means bringing in more than 40,000 extra workers from 49 of 50 states. In california, the air force began airlifting more than 60 utility vehicles to new york today, aboard huge cargo planes. And tonight, these workers from alabama pitching in near hard hit atlantic city. They understand the value that comes from being able to serve others. Reporter: At its peak, more than 8 million customers had no electricity. It's half that number now. And a million more get their power back each day. Better than after hurricane irene. On long island, we found this crew working 16-hour days, their own homes without electricity, repairing a downed line for powerless residents. I saw the truck down the street. I said, I hope you're coming my way. Reporter: The crew was. And moments later, lights came on for the first time since monday. Hey! We just got our lights back. Thank you, lord. Reporter: These workers here, they are replacing a telephone pole, utility poles that we blown over by the storm. It is slow work. Takes about two hours to remove and replace each one of them, it gives you some idea why it could be a week or longer before everyone gets power back and, diane, in the meantime, it is forecast, there could be a winter storm approaching the northeast sometime late next week. That is worrying news. Thank you so much, ron.

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