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JCP&L Warns Power Could Be Out For 10 Days

Utility company says its hiring extra contractors, urges residents to be prepared

Residents should be prepared for power outages of up to 10 days from the anticipated impact of Hurricane Sandy, according to a release from the parent company of JCP&L.

FirstEnergy Corp, which owns the local utility company along with several others on the East Coast, said in a release that the oncoming storm could wreak havoc with the electrical system and residents should be prepared to be without power for more than a week.

The company is securing outside utility crews, electrical contractor and tree trimmers to assist a beefed up response crew and support workers to help restore power as soon as possible throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland, according to the release.

“Depending on the severity of the storm's impact on the electrical system, customers are encouraged to prepare for the possibility of power outages lasting up to seven to 10 days,” the release says.

The company recommends that residents:

  • Keep a flashlight and extra batteries handy.  Use care when burning candles; open flames are a fire hazard.
  • Gather extra blankets or a sleeping bag for each person.  Do not use gas stoves, kerosene heaters or other open-flame heat sources to prevent deadly carbon monoxide gas from building up in your home.
  • If you have a water well and pump, keep an emergency supply of bottled water and/or fill your bathtub with fresh water.
  • Stock an emergency supply of convenience foods that do not require cooking.
  • Keep a battery-powered radio with extra batteries on hand.  Tune in to a local radio station for current storm information.
  • Have a hard-wired telephone or a charged cell phone handy in the event you need to report your electricity is out.  Mobile phones can be charged in your vehicle using a car charger when power is out.  If you have a smart phone, this will ensure you have access to online information sources.

The company says its call centers will be fully staffed. Customers without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report the outage, the release says.  

Customers should immediately report downed wires to JCP&L or local police or fire department.  Customers should never go near a downed power line, even if you think it's no longer carrying electricity, the release says.

For updated information on the company’s storm preparation efforts, current outages, the storm restoration process and tips for staying safe, visit the 24/7 Power Center at www.firstenergycorp.com/outages_help.  JCP&L will also provide updates via Twitter @JCP_L, the release says.

“Based on current predictions, we are making plans to position our crews to get ahead of the storm and minimize the impact on our customers,” Chuck Jones, president of FirstEnergy Utilities, said in the release.  “FirstEnergy crews and additional hazard teams and support staff are ready to assist the restoration process.”

Bayratt October 27, 2012 at 10:20 PM
Some things you can to now.... get all your laundry done, no power no laundry, put water in any type of container that will freeze.. this way you can keep your milk, butter eggs etc cold for a couple days. we have a freezer full of Arizona bottles. water bottles and a milk container full and frozen.And if the power does go, if you have a car charger you can charge your phones, Ipods and puters with that. and invest in a radio that runs on battery power. I have a very old "dinosaur" boom box.... runs on D batteries. I was going to toss it, but thought better.. it came in real handy last year. And you can always wash clothes buy hand.
frink October 28, 2012 at 12:44 AM
Sorry you can't afford it, I'm just saying I lost a lot last year, and after my fridge and freezer food cost me about that much I thought it was a safe investment.
frink October 28, 2012 at 12:47 AM
$300 generators which can power your fridge, a sump pump, and a couple lights delivered to your door are available at Amazon. They are weeks back-ordered right now but were available for 1 day shipping on Wednesday. They were down to $220 over the summer. US made name brand generators were also available at any Home Depot for close to the same price.
Dave Sleeper October 28, 2012 at 02:04 AM
OK Bay Ratt, here's the plan. You take one dollar per day, (That's 4 quarters) and ya put it in a big glass jug on your kitchen table. One year later ... "Whella!!" 300 smackers and you get the the generator. Life is good! Or, you could take the money you spent last week at the 7-11 buying scratch off lottery tickets and still have enough money to buy a carton of Lucky Strikes. Life gets even better!
John Pine October 28, 2012 at 02:41 AM
Most are very expensive and are generally used be the rich as they thumb their noses at us in the dark. Of course, all the money spent by the Obama administration on Obamacare and "dreams" for illegals could've bought generators for all of us!
John Pine October 28, 2012 at 02:47 AM
I can't think of anywhere that is NOT a city that has an all underground grid. And even in most of NYC, where the grid is underground, is still connected to the outside generation via overhead transmission lines. NYC's main sources of power come from steel lattice tower lines from the north, such as Indian Point and Niagra, and the Linden-Goethals tie which sits very high between SI and Linden,NJ. A tree could still bring down these wires or even just the wind if it's strong enough. Then you have hot weather which always strains underground wires because they cannot cool down because they are underground. Bottom line is power grid failures, whether local or regional will always be a problem. Self sustaining power, such as wind, solar, or geothermal is what should be in every home and building, if only a priority was placed on it. You'd never have to rely on outside power again!
Bayratt October 28, 2012 at 04:01 AM
Hey Dave sleeper... Do U know me??? NO.. back off a hole. I do NOT play the lottery I DO Not smoke....I KNOW that 4 quarters are a dollar... I am NOT a low life.. I have a job, I have a life.. so back off s*&^ head... how dare you slander me over a comment I made????
KC October 28, 2012 at 04:13 AM
God I wish this crap had all happened when I was a little younger. This is gonna suck bananas and I am sorry, but when I am nervous I do complain a lot. I think the media coverage is good because we can all try to prepare..... "try". But the coverage is also bad because it is prolonging the event with this long drawn out paranoia. I hate to say it, but I just think this is gonna be really, really bad. To try to pin that on JCP&L is however IMO patently unfair. And I am in no way affiliated w/ them apart from being a customer. It is like the insurance companies say - an act of God. I always wondered why some legal hack hasn't challenged their crap, by claiming they are atheists.I mean the insurance companies don't ask what your religion is when they take the checks every year. Anyway, just random meanderings from a nervous nellie. Stay safe all. : /
KC October 28, 2012 at 04:14 AM
PS The lunatics next door are having a drunken hurricane party a tad early lol
KC October 28, 2012 at 04:17 AM
Gale run some water in your tub.. You can at least use it to flush the toilet for a coupla days I would think. We are gonna have to toughen up I think. Good Luck
KC October 28, 2012 at 04:20 AM
thanks digger for the heads up. Also, fill zip lock bags with water ahd make ice bags for the same reason. When they melt you can drink the water too. Or sponge bathe with it whatever. Good idea though.
KC October 28, 2012 at 04:22 AM
I tell ya Mark I live in a very heavily wooded area. I am more afraid of the downed trees than anything, This week I saw trucks trimming all around the power lines. In my 27 years I have never, ever seen the trees trimmed. I am happy they did at least that - took away truckloads of branches. I think the leaves are also gonna be another pain because they can block the storm drains. Please try to keep them clear people. Rake your leaves and clean the storm drains near you. It could save your homes.
m October 28, 2012 at 04:43 AM
uhh yea the company loses money...those guys are making the money - not saying it isnt worth it to pay them extra to do the work, just sayin your comment is lame --.all dads miss out on family crap..thats life when you sell your time for money --
Chrissym October 28, 2012 at 06:48 PM
In response to all of the JCP&L bashing, have some patience and don't be so ignorant. The men and women working to restore power are thinking of YOUR safety as well as their own! It's not as easy as picking up the wires and reattaching them. Get a clue! Most likely, their families will be without power as well. Frustrating yes...but think of the consequences if safety is not the #1 priority. ...and to the poster asking what would happen if she told JCP&L they would have to wait 10 days after the due date to get paid, c'mon....Communicate with them, and they are usually more than willing to make an arrangement. Please, let's all just stay safe and help each other.
Jason October 28, 2012 at 07:42 PM
If you have a problem with JCP&L have a problem with the executives in Ohio. The linemen and the tree guys are out there risking their lives in the storm, while everyone else is hiding in their basement scared.
Cardinal October 28, 2012 at 07:49 PM
BlameMother NatureNot JCP&L
7ts October 29, 2012 at 02:52 AM
I'm sorry but this isn't about the men that work for First Energy this is about the corporation First Energy that seems to not have used the revenues they got from us to upgrade their infrastructure since the last fiasco but instead just keep it in their bank accounts accruing interest. I work for an engineering firm that deals with PSE&G and while they aren't the greatest I can tell you they have been upgrading their substations in the 5 years I've been working with them. While I have have fellow employees who have worked for JCP&L and tell me the corporate atmosphere there stinks. They pay their employees peanuts and they expect the world from them.
Homedel October 29, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Since holmdel boe shut down the hs as an evacuation shelter after irene...where do holmdel residents go when we lose power????
Adam Hochron (Editor) October 29, 2012 at 03:08 PM
Hi Homedel, There have been receiving points set up in each township to take people to shelters if they want. Check with your town to see where your locations are.
Technokat October 30, 2012 at 03:31 AM
If they were required by law to give per hour service refund incentives to all customers, you'd suddenly see an upgraded system being installed everywhere with underground wires. Fine them, and you'll get results. Unfortunately, our rates would go up to eat the costs.
jcpl stinks October 30, 2012 at 08:05 PM
It's not the dedicated men and women doing the long hours and dangerous work its the worms sitting in corporate office with no clue and having another company owning the poles complicates repairs. I've been trying to get a damaged leaning pole since last years snow storm and nothing done. Verizon and jcp&l pointing fingers at each other. No wonder its such a mess
PSMITH October 30, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Wow the comments on this site are so utterly rediculous I would laugh if it wasn't so sad. Don't you think maybe they should be able to control the weather too? Oh and maybe they should be responsible for the idiots that don't evacuate when they are told to. And how bad are they to try to warn you ahead of time on what could happen. You people are really sad.
Mike Simpson October 30, 2012 at 09:23 PM
To clarify, the BOE has absolutely no say in whether or not a school is used as a shelter in an emergency. For Irene in 2011 the locations were selected solely by Monmouth County OEM and this year for Sandy the locations were selected by NJ State OEM as part of a revised shelter plan. In fact the Boards own attorney confirmed that to the BOE last year after Irene.
reader October 31, 2012 at 05:43 AM
I agree that the JCP&L issues stem from incompetent management. How do you explain that every time there is a storm minor or major or a very hot wether only 7 houses in the same development loose power for hours before the rest of the 30 houses in the same development loose power? And mind you that all houses in the development were build at the same time. The field engineer executes the management's instructions (ok, ok service orders from the provisioning system. But guess who's managing the provisioning system). I wonder what the management executes...
Technokat October 31, 2012 at 06:28 AM
I know someone who told me that his son-in-law works for the electric company so their neighborhood always get their power lines fixed first. Nice, huh?
Quote this November 01, 2012 at 08:01 AM
These are members of point pleasant? You people are mostly morons. Blaming shite on people that no one can control? "They should have been more prepared"? Perhaps you should hire yourself off as a consultant. In fact, walk up to the next work truck you see and tell them what they're doing wrong. See how fast your block gets power. I mean, I knew some of my neighbors were a little quirky, but that's ridiculous.
lilly November 01, 2012 at 09:53 AM
They probably take their sweet damn time their getting payed anyway..they are the worst company ever. All the other towns have power everywhere I know all my friends have power back on here u can sit and wait for days but their quick to take your damn money
lilly November 01, 2012 at 09:57 AM
Its sad rt. 9 In howell has been without electricity for days n its a major highway so pathetic..we need a new electric company and workers
TC November 02, 2012 at 12:23 AM
My lines ARE underground. Still no power. The substations are sub par.
joeg November 03, 2012 at 08:10 PM
I live in east brunswick and it states on their site that they serve 3700 + in my town and 5 residences have been restored????? 5 rsidences????? What a joke! I'm so furious, I have 2 babies and its getting cold

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