About 15,000 PSE&G customers in New Jersey were still without power as of 5:30 a.m,, down from 33,000 last night. Less than 500 customers in Mercer County are now without power.
Many of the remaining power outages are because of flooding, which is also affecting gas service in some counties. Almost 1,600 gas customers faced outages as of last night.
The company has restored power to more than three quarters of a million customers and estimates that power will be fully restored in Mercer, Bergen, Hudson, Essex, Passaic, Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties by midnight Friday.
Power is expected to be restored to three counties in central New Jersey that have experienced severe flooding – Somerset, Middlesex and Union – by Sunday.
The storm is the worst in the company’s history in terms of outages. It affected more than a third of the utility’s 2.2 million electric customers.
About 6,000 PSE&G employes are working to restore power, including crews from Wisconsin, West Virginia, Florida, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee. The crews are working around the clock, PSE&G representtaives said.
The company is asking customers to be aware of the safety risks outlined below when dealing with flooded basements and power generators.
Flooded basements can pose a genuine risk, and customers should be cautious and follow these guidelines:
If you lose electricity and your basement is flooded, notify PSE&G (1-800-436-PSEG (7734) and call your municipality for direction and assistance in pumping water out of the basement. Stay away from the breaker box if it’s in a flooded basement, and don’t go into a flooded basement if energized wires are present.
If water is rising to the height of any gas appliance, the gas supply to the appliance should be turned off. If you are unable to do so, you should contact PSE&G or your local police or fire department for assistance.
To restore gas service to appliances call PSE&G (1-800-436-7734) and have the appliances checked for safety and restored to proper operation.
You should call PSE&G (1-800-436-PSEG (7734) immediately if you smell gas.
If you use a portable electric generator, you should carefully read and follow the manual that came with it. Be sure your generator is UL-approved, installed by a licensed electrician and inspected by your local electrical inspector. There must be a way to physically disconnect your generator from utility lines.
To report a power outage, call PSE&G’s Customer Service line: 1-800-436-PSEG (7734).
PSEG online information
If you have a handheld device, or who are at an alternate location with power, you can view the status of your outage by logging on to My Account at www.pseg.com. Information is also available on the company’s Twitter page at http://twitter.com/psegoutageinfo.