Thousands of homes and businesses are still without power in Atlantic Canada and Eastern Quebec, one week after Storm Fiona.
More than 66,000 customers in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island were still waiting for their lights to come back on.
More than 90 percent of Maritime Electric’s customers were in the dark on the Island at the height of the storm, as were 80 percent of Nova Scotia Power’s customers.
In Nova Scotia, more than 85 percent of customers had their electricity restored as of Friday night, according to its power utility.
It said over 1,500 workers are ramping up efforts to reconnect areas to the grid, mainly in eastern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton.
“Nova Scotians are seeing more cranes and heavy equipment on the ground,” Nova Scotia Power said in a news release Saturday.
“In many cases downed trees are so large, heavy equipment and cranes are the only way they can be moved in order to clear the way for crews to get in and start to repair, rebuild and restore power.”
Extra crews have been brought in from other provinces, but some communities will still be without power throughout the weekend and longer, Maritime Electric spokeswoman Kim Griffin said in a media briefing Friday afternoon.
As well, the P.E.I. government is offering payments of up to $250 per household to help cover the cost of food, gas and other basic needs.
Residents can apply online through the Canadian Red Cross or by calling 1-800-863-6582 daily between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
The government is also granting a 30-day grace period on the expiration of driver’s licenses and motor vehicle registrations.