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National Grid gives Allentown residents a one-day reprieve

Some Buffalo residents who had been making plans to spend a hot day without power have been given a one-day reprieve. And others will be able to escape the disruption altogether.

Late Wednesday afternoon, National Grid announced that it will be turning off electricity on Friday instead of Thursday as it connects a new D’Youville College building to the electrical grid.

About 930 customers in Allentown and the West Side had been bracing for eight hours without power on Thursday. Now, only about 400 customers will be affected and the work will be done from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, said Virginia Limmiatis, a National Grid spokeswoman.

“They need to get this work done before the start of classes. It’s connecting a new building to our network,” Limmiatis said.

Some residents, like Nilda Hernandez, whose streets were on the original shut-off list, will now be spared as the utility has reduced the number of streets that will be affected by the work.

She had fretted about how to protect the oscar fish, koi and turtle in five burbling tanks inside her Hudson Street house.

“That’s my main concern. I don’t want my babies to die,” said Hernandez before the news broke that she would not lose power after all.

Residents and businesses that will lose power for the day are on Fargo Avenue, Porter Avenue, Prospect Street, Pennsylvania Street, Jersey Street, Niagara Street, Plymouth Avenue, West Avenue, Orton Place, Allen Street, Arlington Place, College Street and Hudson Street.

National Grid suggested that anyone in need of a break from the heat can find respite at the West Side Community Center at 161 Vermont St. or the Belle Center at 104 Maryland St.

At the newly opened Buffalo Rome restaurant at 388 Porter, near the D’Youville campus, proprietor Victor Mirando has a plan.

He was going to get in early, turn the air conditioning on full blast, make his bistro as cold as possible and hope the air would stay cool until the power comes back.

Solutions from National Grid and the county Health Department were unhelpful, he said.

Early Wednesday afternoon he said he still didn’t have official confirmation about whether or not his power would go off.

A list of strategies on an official advisory that he did get were expensive. He listed them with a laugh:

Install a generator. Find a permitted refrigerator somewhere else. Rent a refrigerator truck.

“I think if I just don’t open the fridge,” Mirando said, “everything will be fine.”