PSEG: Power May Not be Restored for 10 Days in Some Areas

Getting fuel refineries running a 'top priority'

Correction appended 11:30 pm Oct. 31

PSEG officials Wednesday afternoon said restoring power to most customers without eletricity, including in Essex and Bergen counties, may take anywhere from 7 to 10 days -- until next Friday at the latest -- while a few isolated pockets may take even longer than that.

“We continue to make significant progress,” said Ralph LaRossa,* the president of PSEG, said during a 5 pm conference call with reporters. “Our latest estimate is that we had 1.7 million customers affected but that’s now down to 900,000."

“Lights are coming on as we speak,” he added, noting that there are still “7,000 primary damage locations” throughout the company’s service area.

Crews from utility companies as far away as Texas and Illinois have been called in to assist in the historic repair effort. “Offers of help” have come in from the state and federal government as well as power company CEOs across the country, LaRossa said.

Estimates of the number of affected customers have fluctuated over the last few hours as additional information has come in, he said. In Essex County, LaRossa now estimates that 100,000 were still without power as of Wednesday evening, while power has been restored to 150,000 customers.

In Bergen County, which was hardest hit due to the damage caused by falling trees, 170,000 were without power Wednesday, down from a peak of 235,000.

Compounding the hardship in the wake of the epic storm has been a shortage of gasoline. Even in areas with power, service stations have still run out of fuel because power has not yet been restored to refineries.

LaRossa declined to give specific estimates regarding when the refineries may come back on line because the issue of fuel availability could affect commodities trading markets. He did say, however, that getting power back to the refineries is a top priority.

"We're focused on the refineries...It's at the very top of our list," he said.

He also said crews may attempt to restore power to individual gas stations along major highways, like Rt. 17 in Bergen County.

While additional storm-related outages have largely ceased, LaRossa also said that power may be intentionally shut off briefly in small areas where a downed pole or other circumstance requires crews to come in and make repairs. PSEG will try and notify affected customers beforehand, he said.

*LaRossa's name was originally misspelled.

Orly7581 October 31, 2012 at 11:56 PM
are these PS&EG crews working around the clock?
Mad Jerseyite November 01, 2012 at 01:27 PM
Are they working at all? Smh sorry I'm a bit perturbed by this whole situation
Victoria Hanks November 01, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Outraged that we saw crews down at essex green yesterday just standing around and could find no one working in montclair.
Shelly November 01, 2012 at 03:12 PM
Have not seen one pse & g truck in Montclair.....though I have seen many Verizon trucks..and as a testament to Verizon, never cell lost service throughout so kudos to them. At least the football team is practicing. That is important. As a large downed tree blocks my street, I can look out across the football field from my cold powerless house and see the team practice. Also, it is nice to know that the sanitation building has 24 hour lights and power. Great that the garbage and rats at the dump have lights but we don't. Perhaps I can go over there and read tonight. This town's priorities are all screwed up.
Henry November 01, 2012 at 05:25 PM
WOW.... I can't even believe you people can act like this!! People are working around the clock trying to get services up in Jersey... If any of you can stop for a moment with your self centered attitudes and think! We are dealing with a larger issue then power... Gasoline leaks flooded substation and clogged sewer systems. What do you think happens when everything comes on at one time???? Explosions, your residence burnt down!!! Come on people this is a east coast thing not a Booker thing! When Mr Booker becomes a Magician then you can blame him....
Henry November 01, 2012 at 05:35 PM
Sorry it submitted befor I can finish .... Or a PSE&G problem, Verizon or any other Mayor, Officer and township employee.
Victoria Hanks November 02, 2012 at 01:07 AM
Hi henry- do u have power? If so we'll be right over.
Kathy Collins November 02, 2012 at 02:44 AM
My building on 181 River Road is so strange. Neighbors on my floor have power and I don't. Some of the Apartments have electricity in one room and the rest of the Apartment no power. Weirdest thing I've ever seen.
Victoria Hanks November 02, 2012 at 01:00 PM
Kathy check breakers and fuses that could have been tripped or blown-sounds weird as you say to have power to some and not all in one building or room
Matt November 02, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Crazy. Belleville for a large part without power. Kuddos to the repairmen, 5 days is starting to stretch it though.
Justin d dark November 03, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Yeah so much for " we don't need to spend on infastructure or for emergency response" Five days without power in bloomfield and not a word from anyone on when it will be restored other tha the ten day max. Oh the gov says HEHas a calandar, but hasn't released it yet!?!?!? Nice that he has it. Allanyone seems to give sa s?@t about is the freakin gas... Some things never change. Btw had to sit in col and dark house for two days watching a fully lit tennis court across the street... Couldn't the town offer a plug in for the houses surrounding... Or at least have the decency to turn them off? I know things could be worse... But they could be a hell of a lot better too!
Christine November 03, 2012 at 02:47 PM
I have no power and a small child but when seeing the aftermath in Staten Island and the jersey shore - I am not complaining.
George L. November 03, 2012 at 06:17 PM
I have seen 0 PSEG crews working in my area of West Orange- which is on the Livingston border. This is a ****ing joke!


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