Parts of Sussex County may be without power for up to 3 days as the region digs out from the first major snowstorm of the season.
Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative said on Tuesday morning that almost all of its 12,000 customers were without power due to transmission lines being taken down by trees.
“Once the power to the transmission lines is restored we will start the slow process of checking circuits to make sure nothing else fell on lines while the substations were de-energized,” it said in a Facebook page in warning that it could take 2 to 3 days to fully restore power.
Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative serves customers in the county’s most rural locations, including Vernon, Frankford and Wantage.
While the two-day storm affected much of New Jersey, Sussex County appears to have been hardest hit.
Overall, more than 35,000 in Sussex County were without power, including customers of JCP&L, county Administrator Greg Poff said at 9 a.m.
JCP&L provided a list of grocery stores where customers without power can pick up free water and ice. Sussex Rural Electric Cooperative also provided a listing of warming centers where customers can recharge electronics.
In Sparta, about half of the 150 residential units at Knoll Communities, which includes a large senior population, was without power just before noon. However, a senior center in the complex was available with power and offering shelter, a receptionist said.
Parts of Vernon, the county’s largest municipality, received more than a foot of snow, and public schools in the township were closed for a second day Tuesday.
Vernon Mayor Harry Shortway said 55 trees fell across roadways during the storm, at times entangled with power lines, complicating efforts to clear roads.
One motorist was freed, unhurt, after attempting to drive through and getting their vehicle snagged in downed lined, Shortway said.
“People should not be taking chances,” Shortway said.
Poff said that rising temperatures Tuesday afternoon are expected to aid in the clean-up process.
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