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Facebook: Western Massachusetts Electric Company

Utility workers from Western Massachusetts are heading to Vermont to help crews there restore power to more than 22,000 customers after a Nor’easter blanketed the area with heavy, wet snow.

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Massachusetts’ highest court has reduced penalties imposed against two electric utilities by state regulators for their poor responses to a pair of 2011 storms that left hundreds of thousands of customers without power for days.

National Weather Service

The snow and wind from the weekend’s winter storm knocked out power for hundreds of thousands of Bay State residents this weekend, but the while much of the state has had their electricity restored, residents in some areas are still waiting.

As of 10 am Monday morning, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency reported that 116,000 were still without power – including 93,000 NSTAR customers, and 23,000 served by National Grid.

State energy regulators have fined three Massachusetts utilities nearly $25 million for their response to two major storms in 2011.

The penalties were announced Tuesday by the Department of Public Utilities after a yearlong investigation.

Some customers were without power for a week after Tropical Storm Irene in August 2011 and a surprise October snowstorm.