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Readington Township Police Department
Friday November 9th, 2012 :: 04:38 p.m. EST


Message from the Mayor

It is understood that the following information is of little consequence to our residents who remain without power, but want you to know that we continue to work tirelessly until power is restored to all of our residents. While we continue to cooperate and work closely with JCP&L, we will hold them accountable for the lengthy outages that our community is experiencing.
I would like to share with you the work that I, along with all members of the Township Committee, Township employees and volunteers have done to provide our residents with safety, essential services and power from the aftermath of hurricane Sandy.
In preparation for the storm, the Office of Emergency Management setup an Emergency Operations Center in the Municipal Building. This provides a central location where all calls pertaining to the storm are routed. This includes police, fire, road cleanup and all other storm related calls. This center has been operating since the storm hit our town on Monday, October. 29th. The police, OEM and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) continue to take calls to assist our residents.
At the Municipal building, we continue to provide bottled water, ice, and non-potable water. We provide a warming station, internet access, a computer and charging for electronic devices. The fire departments also provide water to farms with livestock.
Since the storm, we participated on daily conference calls with JCP&L and the Governor’s office. At these meetings we continuously asked for additional support for our town. Although JCP&L brought in thousands of out-of-state linemen to repair downed pole and wires and forestry personnel, we are not able to get power back as quickly as we hoped. Every town in Hunterdon County is sharing a similar experience.
It did not take long to realize that getting power back to our homes and schools would be benefitted by a joint effort between Readington and JCP&L. In an effort to expedite the return of power, the Police Chief and I drove through our streets and documented all of the streets that had downed trees with wires. This helped JCP&L significantly. They cleared the trees from the streets within a day which helped the power crew to more quickly repair downed poles and wires.
Although returning power to Readington Middle School and Holland Brook School was a high priority, it was problematic due to the extensive damage to the circuits (wires) coming from the North Branch substation. I personally spoke with the president of JCP&L and insisted that power be returned to these schools in a timely manner. In addition, we devised two contingency plans to get power back to these schools. We worked with the Army Corps of Engineers to devise a plan for FEMA to provide industrial generators. We also worked with an independent local electrical contractor who volunteered his services to assess the work needed to provide generator power to get our children back to school. Fortunately, JCP&L came through and restored power to the schools on Thursday evening 11/8. School will resume on Monday 11/12.
I would like to dispel some rumors that were shared with me. The first was that JCP&L substations were damaged. There were other rumors that JCP&L ran out of poles and did not have the equipment to repair their circuits. All of these rumors are false. There were no damaged substations or lack of equipment. Simply stated, the damage to the poles and wires was extensive and it is taking time to rebuild our circuits. All of our neighboring towns share a similar experience.

Thomas Auriemma,

Readington Township Police Department
507 County Road 523
Readington Township, NJ 08889

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 908-534-4031

Sebastian Donaruma

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