August 8, 5:07 pm
- The hard power shutoff on Mountain Ave has been pushed to 5 pm; it is not expected to last more than 1 hour but may affect a handful of handful of homes.
- As of 5:27 pm, a JCP&L crew is en route to the intersection of Mountain and Cambridge to repair the lines downed from the tree earlier this week.
- Outage at 55 Fern Way has been repaired, which should bring the remaining homes on Timber Drive back online.
- According to JCP&L, these are the streets that still may have outages in at least some homes. If you’re power is still is still out and is NOT on this list, please call JCP&L directly at 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the "Report Outage" link on [www.firstenergycorp.com] www.firstenergycorp.com.
- Allen Terr
- Cataract Hollow
- Cedar Green
- Cinnamon Tree
- Diamond Hill
- Murray Hill
- Old Cannon
- Tip Top Way
- Twin Falls
For those residents receiving text alerts or calls from JCP&L incorrectly indicating your power has been restored, the Township has confirmed that residents should report the outage again directly to JCP&L to ensure your location remains in their system until true restoration can take place.
August 8, 1:20 pm
- Today around 3 pm, JCP&L will do a hard shutoff of lines along Mountain Avenue, hopefully for no more than 30 minutes to an hour, in an attempt to restore power to the Murray Hill side of town. Residents who HAVE power who live near Mountain Ave may experience an outage during this time - we have been told this may only affect a handful of residences, plus Summit Medical Group. The Township is trying to get exact streets that may be affected by this shutdown but as of time of this publication, did not have that information.
- Crest Drive: Verizon has righted/repaired their poles, which were downed, along with JCP&L wires, making the street impassable. Last night’s lightning storm forced them to stop work but were back at it early Saturday morning.The road will soon be passable once Verizon is done with their work; JCP&L will come in afterward to repair their lines on this street.
- Our BH Office of Emergency Management has identified several other priorities in town to communicate to JCP&L to address ASAP: 55 Fern Way, which should bring power back to the remaining Timber Drive homes still out; Briarwood and Springfield outages likely are a result of a broken primary that is wrapped up in trees; Washington & Prospect streets; and Apple Tree Row and Roger’s Place. OEM Coordinator Padovano is trying to get a timeframe from JCP&L as to when those specific locations may be addressed.
The Berkeley Heights Volunteer Rescue Squad (378 Snyder Avenue) again will be utilized as a cooling and charging center on Saturday, August 8, 2020 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 am to 7 pm for any Berkeley Heights resident that is without power and doesn’t have air conditioning and in need of charging devices. People are asked to wear masks at all times while they are in the building!
The sewer plant is back up and running, as is Summit Medical Group.
August 7, 9:20 pm
Power has been restored to Summit Medical Group; Verizon working on last impassable street in town. The sewer plant is also now back online after no power since the storm; sewer crews had been manning the plant 24/7 with emergency generators powering the plant. As of 7:50 pm Friday, there were 321 JCP&L customers out of power; in comparison, as of 3:30 pm Friday afternoon, there were 813 customers out of power; 89 separate outages; 30 forestry orders; 12 hazard orders; 8 line orders; 54 orders are dispatched.
Please see JCP&L updated Friday’s restoration schedule here.
August 7, 4:20 pm
Berkeley Heights Mayor Angie Devanney on Thursday wrote to Gov. Phil Murphy’s office insisting that the State of New Jersey and Board of Public Utilities force infrastructure improvements “that will keep the lights on during any storm, no matter how small or severe.”
“I am writing to you out of frustration with the utility companies and state preparedness resulting in lingering power outages for the residents of Berkeley Heights after Tropical Storm Isaias,” Mayor Devanney wrote.
“Undoubtedly, New Jerseyans have shouldered an incredibly difficult year combatting the Covid-19 virus, Stay-at-Home orders, social and racial injustice, getting our small business community up but only partially running as well as grappling with tough issues impacting how and what school may look like in the fall whether launching Kindergarteners or college students.
“So, it is unconscionable that the residents of my community are now struggling without power during the warmest month of the year. What is more difficult to understand is how we have not learned from lessons of the past—late Spring storm of 2018, Halloween Nor’easter ice storm of October 2011 and Super Storm Sandy.”
Read the entire letter here.
Read the entire article in TAPinto Berkeley Heights here
Meanwhile, Mayor Devanney, our Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Tony Padovano, Police Chief DiPasqaule and Township Administrator Liza Viana are in constant communication with Berkeley Heights’ designated JCP&L representative, who has been working closely with the Township to get critical infrastructures back up and running. Our BH rep has also been communicating with Union County OEM to ensure Berkeley Heights’ priorities are addressed. As of noon August 7, our sewer plant, as well as Summit Medical Group, are two key critical infrastructures still without power. We believe we have identified the sewer plant’s outage location and are working to address it.
- As of noon Friday, there were 762 homes in Berkeley Heights without power; by the end of the day, 111 more will be restored. JCP&L expects that by day’s end Saturday, 365 more will be restored. Please keep in mind that hazardous conditions, safety concerns and critical infrastructures are priorities during restoration efforts.
- For those residents receiving text alerts or calls from JCP&L incorrectly indicating your power has been restored, the Township has confirmed that residents should report the outage again directly to JCP&L to ensure your location remains in their system until true restoration can take place.
- Governor Livingston High School has also been added to the priority list, as staff needs to get into the building to begin COVID-19 preparation for the school year.
- BH neighborhoods of Countryside and Murray Hill are in fact included in BH numbers, even though they have New Providence and Summit zip codes.
- Our Department of Public Works Director has been leading cleanup efforts and will begin a chipping/branch cleanup schedule after power has been restored to all residents and they have had time to clean up their properties and drag debris to the street.
- The Berkeley Heights Volunteer Rescue Squad will provide a cooling and charging center today from 7 AM to 7 PM. Please wear masks at all times while in the building. 378 Snyder Avenue. They may keep the center open during the weekend; please check the Rescue Squad’s Facebook page @BHVRS for details.
August 6, 9:30 pm
- Beginning tonight, mayors will receive nightly restoration reports from JCP&L. For the JCP&L restoration schedule for Berkeley Heights, please click here. In a nutshell:
- 111 households were restored today
- 365 are expected to be restored tomorrow
- 309 on Saturday
- 177 on Sunday
- 110 on Monday
- 33 on Tuesday to complete restoration
Click here for the entire article in TAPinto Berkeley Heights
- Our sewer department is also out of power and operating on an emergency generator; it is a priority to get power back on at that critical infrastructure facility. Our sewer plans uses 500 gallons of fuel a day to run the emergency generator; we currently have 3,600 gallons remaining. We ordered another 2,000 gallons today to give us 11 days of power. This is one facility we need to keep running effectively.
- Summit Medical Group also still does not have power; it is a priority to get power back on at that critical infrastructure facility. Runnell’s Hospital, a long-term care facility, also just recently had power restored.
- As of 4 pm today, 1,108 out of 4,900 households in Berkeley Heights were out of power (22.6% of JCP&L BH customers); Summit had 45% of households out of power, New Providence 36% and Chatham Township had 30% out.
- JCP&L crews have been working in Berkeley Heights day and night since the storm was over, often working with our DPW and Office of Emergency Management (OEM)
- Roads in surrounding towns were still clogged with downed trees as of Thursday afternoon; in comparison, Berkeley Heights has just one road blocked by a tree, in Murray Hill. All other Township and County roads in Berkeley Heights are safe and passable.
With many mayors pleading with JCP&L to improve communication, the NJ Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) Tweeted Thursday afternoon:
"We know how frustrating it is to be without power. We are in constant communication with the utilities and they are working around the clock to restore power as quickly and safely as possible. We will keep you updated as new information becomes available."
The administration, OEM, Fire Department, Police Department, and DPW are in daily contact with storm cleanup and restoration updates, and we are communicating with the Berkeley Heights Rescue Squad and others, as well. Our OEM coordinator is also in touch with Union County OEM to ensure our priority needs are known, as well as at least daily contact with JCP&L as well as other utilities as needed.
Notes from the Mayor’s Call with JCP&L today at 3 pm:
- Targeting midnight Friday for roughly 85% restoration; please see BH schedule here
- Ice & water distribution from JCP&L is being revised due to retail partners being overwhelmed; they may use centralized non-retail locations; more details to come
- Major cause of outages is substations outage due to extensive damage to feeders into substations due to trees
- JCP&L will issue a "Mayors Report" beginning this evening (see BH restoration schedule) and will come every day until restoration is complete. These updates will include user estimated time of restorations (ETRs) identifying how many customers will be restored when.
Post-Tropical Storm update from Mayor Devanney, Thursday afternoon:
We are in constant communication with our utility companies to get a more defined restoration schedule. Please understand that critical infrastructure like our sewer plant, long-term care facilities like Runnell’s Hospital and medical facilities like Summit Medical must take priority. We know it’s frustrating and thank you for your patience! We WILL get through this - and anything else 2020 can throw at us - TOGETHER!
- Reminder concerning 9-1-1. Tree limbs down unless they are on wires or a person is NOT a 911 emergency. These calls are straining the 911 phone system in the entire region and real emergencies are unable to connect. Please call BHPD’s non-emergency number at (908) 464-1111.
- Residents are also encouraged to sign up for Smart911; download the Smart911 app or sign up via website to receive key information needed in an emergency.
- As of 5 pm Thursday, this message from JCP&L:
- Downed trees, broken branches and road closures continue to hamper crews’ efforts to access areas with damage to make repairs to broken poles and downed wires. Nearly 6,000 utility personnel from JCP&L, other FirstEnergy companies, and partner utilities from electric industry mutual assistance organizations are working to restore power in the hardest hit areas in JCP&L. FirstEnergy continues to work closely with these organizations to secure additional resources to assist with storm restoration efforts should they be needed.
- Utility Summaries • JCP&L: Crews are making repairs to about 310,000 customers who remain without power. Hardest hit areas include Monmouth, Ocean and Morris counties. Based on current outages and damage assessments, we expect to restore 85% of affected customers by the end of the day Friday. The majority of remaining customers in both the Northern and Central Regions are expected to be restored by Tuesday, August 11 at 11:30 p.m.
- During severe weather, customers who are without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the "Report Outage" link on www.firstenergycorp.com.
- Water and Ice Locations: Water and ice are available to customers without service due to yesterday’s storm. For a list of locations, visit http://www.firstenergycorp.com/storminfo and click on “water and ice locations.”
- For updated information on the company’s current outages, FirstEnergy’s storm restoration process and tips for staying safe, visit the 24/7 Power Center at [www.firstenergycorp.com/outages]www.firstenergycorp.com/outages.
August 6, 2020 - noon
The Berkeley Heights Department of Public Works (DPW) is working to clear roads and debris. JCP&L is working to restore power. PSE&G is working to restore gas. More updates to follow as available. Please do your best to be patient as the damage is widespread. This was a huge storm and the cleanup effort is massive.
- Our sewer department is also out of power and operating on an emergency generator; it is a priority to get power back on at that critical infrastructure facility
- Summit Medical Group also still does not have power; it is a priority to get power back on at that critical infrastructure facility
- 99% of roads in Berkeley Heights are now passable
- DPW is cleaning up debris, as well as clearing up basins and roadsides
- Union County is clearing the county roads of Plainfield, Mountain, Springfield, etc.
- The Police Department is working closely with the Berkeley Heights Office of Emergency Management to identify potential remaining areas of safety concerns
- Residents are encouraged to continue to report outages directly to JCP&L; we understand that some areas may be indicated on the JCP&L outage page as "restored" but you still do not have power. Please continue to report your outages to ensure JCP&L has the accurate information.
- FoodSafety.gov has a chart for determining how long foods will stay fresh and usable after a power outage.
- From the Police Department: Be mindful of where you are walking and where children are playing. Stay away from damaged trees and low-hanging wires and as always, call us immediately to report downed wires or unsafe conditions at 1-888-544-4877.
The Township thanks residents for reporting downed trees or trees leaning on power lines. JCP&L has been alerted to all reported incidents and they have prioritized remediation based on severity and safety issues. We continue to stay in communication with our JCP&L representatives, as well as our Police Department, DPW, Office of Emergency Management and sewer department as we manage cleanup efforts.
Residents are also encouraged to sign up for Smart911; download the Smart911 app or sign up via website to receive key information needed in an emergency. The Smart911 app provides enhanced functionality by sending targeted alerts based on the user’s location. Smart911 app users will receive the highest priority alerts and warnings based on their real-time location. Not only can residents sign up for emergency alerts, but they can also sign up to be notified of non-emergency Township alerts and news, which will include messages from the Mayor during the COVID-19 health pandemic.
The Township is scheduling a special post-storm branch pick up in the near future. The DPW will begin branch pickup upon power being restored to allow residents ample time to clean their properties. A detailed schedule is forthcoming.
JCP&L: Ice & Water Available for Those in Need:
Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) continues to restore service to customers who lost power and has activated a retail water and ice program. For those customers remaining without power for 24 hours or more, JCP&L is offering free water and ice at the following locations beginning 8/5/20 at 10am locally at these nearby locations:
- ACME, 1260 Springfield Avenue, New Providence, Union County
- Kings, 393 Main Street, Chatham, Morris County
- Shop Rite of Chatham, 641 Shunpike Rd / Southern Blvd, Chatham, Morris County
- Kings, 977 Valley Rd, Gillette, Morris County
- Shop Rite of Millburn, 220 Main Street, Millburn, Essex County
- Kings, 778 Morris Tpke, Short Hills, Essex County
- Shop Rite of Springfield, 727 Morris Tpke, Springfield, Union
- Shop Rite, 1153 Valley Road, Stirling, Morris County
- Kings, 784 Springfield Ave, Summit, Union County
- Kings, 64 Mt. Blvd Brady Shopping Center, Warren, Somerset County
Remember: please call JCP&L directly with any power outages. During severe weather, customers who are without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the "Report Outage" link on [www.firstenergycorp.com] www.firstenergycorp.com. Customers should immediately report downed wires to their utility or their local police or fire department. Customers should never go near a downed power line, even if they think it is no longer carrying electricity. Extra caution should be exercised in areas where downed wires may be tangled in downed tree branches or other debris.
Company representatives also have been in contact with emergency management officials, state officials, regulators, and local officials about Tropical Storm Isaias preparation efforts.
During severe weather, customers who are without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the "Report Outage" link on [www.firstenergycorp.com] www.firstenergycorp.com. Customers should immediately report downed wires to their utility or their local police or fire department. Customers should never go near a downed power line, even if they think it is no longer carrying electricity. Extra caution should be exercised in areas where downed wires may be tangled in downed tree branches or other debris.
JCP&L reminds customers to take precautions when using generators during power outages. Emergency power generators offer an option for customers needing or wanting uninterrupted service. However, to ensure the safety of the home’s occupants as well as that of utility company employees who may be working on power lines in the area, the proper generator should be selected and installed by a qualified electrician. When operating a generator, the power coming from the home should always be disconnected. Otherwise, power from
the generator could be sent back into the utility lines, creating a hazardous situation for utility workers.
For updated information on the company’s current outages, FirstEnergy’s storm restoration process, and tips for staying safe, visit the 24/7 Power Center at www.firstenergycorp.com/outages.