Snow Puts Thousands in the Dark
Heavy, wet snow blankets area, bringing down trees and causing power outages, treacherous conditions. Stay off the roads, officials say.
updated: 4:45 p.m., 5:01 p.m., 10:30 p.m.
Jersey Central Power & Light officials told Millburn Mayor Sandra Haimoff and other municipal representatives that because of the snow storm more 160,000 people are without power in Essex, Morris and Sussex counties and that number is going to go up before it goes down.
And rise it did. At 9:45 p.m. JCP&L announced on twitter that more than 250,000 of its customers are without power.
Trees have fallen on electrical wires and there have been fires, she said they told her, but because it's going to keep snowing until midnight, crews will have difficulty getting in and fixing it. JCP&L officials told the mayors (and tweeted) they have crews from Ohio and entral New Jersey in the area.
They could not give her a restoration time or tell her how many trucks were in Millburn or how many people in Millburn are without power, only that more would be without power by the end of the evening.
On Twitter, JCP&L tweeted that restoration could likely continue into the week.
"It's like Irene all over again," she said. "The people who are most anxious about this because it's getting dark, have no power and won't be able to get any information [because of that]."
At 10:30 p.m. 2,709 Short Hills residents were without power and 247 Millburn residents had no power, according to JCP&L's website.
At 2 p.m., the roads were treacherous, the crack of branches and falling trees could be heard all around as branches laden with fall leaves and heavy wet snow came to the ground.
Millburn police report that by 2 p.m., at least 20 trees had come down and power is out throughout town.
Haimoff, along with county and state officials, advised residents to stay of the roads. "It's best if everyone just stays indoors," she said.
The Department of Public Works is working today, Haimoff said, and the town has hired outside contractors to cut trees off of power lines. In addition, police, firefighters and Millburn-Short Hills Volunteer First Aid Squad are all working with additional personnel.
Millburn, as residents know, is still recovering from Irene, which happened two months ago, and right after an earthquake. Now there's an historic record-breaking snow in October.
"What a fluke storm this is," she said. "What's next? A volcano?"
Millburn Township will continue to be in contanct with JCP&L and hope for a better outcome this time than during and after Irene.
"This is the first post-Irene event, so we will wait and hope for better cooperation from the utility that gave the community so many difficulties during the tropical storm," said Office of Emergency Management Spokesman Lt. Peter Eakely of the Millburn Poice Department.
The following areas of Millburn and Short Hills have closed roads, downed trees and/or power outages, according to the police department:
1) Route 124 shutdown at Kings - westbound, eastbound is open; trees down
2) John F. Kennedy Parkway - shutdown one northbound lane, north of Parsonage Hill Road
3) Marion Way, one lane, wires down
4) Coniston Road, tree down
5) Glen Avenue Road Closed, in the area of 20 Glen Avenue
6) Clinton Place - Tree into a house
7) Both Bridges (Hobart Gap and Summit Avenue) over Rte 24 closed, traffic lights are out
8) Trees Down:
Woodland Road / Elmwood Place
Pine Terrace East / Short Hills Avenue
Western Drive / Taylor Road
Cedar Street / Myrtle Avenue
Greenwood Drive / Haran Circle
Puritan Road / Old Short Hills Road
9) Trees and Wires Down:
Old Short Hills Road / Hilltop Drive
Browning Road / Thackery Drive
White Oak Ridge Road
Forest Drive South
Hobart Avenue / South Terrace
Ridgewood Road / Glen Avenue
10) Wires only down
Hartshorn Drive / Robert Drive
Great Oak Drive
Slope Drive / Oxford Drive
To report a power outage, call JCP&L at 888-544-4877.
Patch will update you as we get information. Meanwhile, please let us know what is happening in your neighborhood by uploading pictures or telling us in comments.