JCP&L restores service to two-thirds of customers after damaging nor’easter

Morristown, N.J., November 2, 2011 — Nearly 4,000 employees from Jersey Central Power & Light and FirstEnergy utilities, as well as outside utilities and contractors, continue their around-the-clock efforts to restore service to electric customers following a damaging weekend snowstorm that left more than 379,000 JCP&L customers in northern New Jersey without power.

To date, the company has restored 249,000 customers — two-thirds of all customers who lost power during the storm.

The company is working to restore service to at least 95 percent of the 379,000 customers affected by the snowstorm by midnight November 3, with full restoration by midnight November 4, according to Don Lynch, President, JCP&L. About 130,000 customers remained without power this morning.

Line crews are responding to more than 25,000 damage locations as a result of the storm. Crews have also cleared downed trees on wires in more than 5,100 different locations, and have responded to over 7,600 hazard calls to clear downed wires and make the locations safe.

JCP&L employs a priority system for restoring service that ensures public safety and restores power to the largest number of customers as quickly as possible. Eliminating safety hazards is the highest priority. Crews arrive at trouble locations, make the area safe, and move to other areas.

Once that is accomplished, crews begin to repair lines that supply power to crucial public safety facilities or large areas or groups of customers. A line may be damaged in multiple locations, or at some distance from those who are out of service.

The linemen, tree crews, or other workers that customers see may be on their way to make higher-priority repairs, which must be completed before damages closer to a customer’s home can be fixed.

After local power lines are repaired and put back in service, damage to individual customer service wires may become apparent. Customers are reminded that if their neighbor’s power is on and theirs is not, the problem may be isolated to their individual service and service to the neighbor could be fed from a different circuit. Customers are encouraged to report such problems, even if it is later in the restoration process.

JCP&L serves 1.1 million customers in 13 counties in New Jersey.

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