Letter to the Editor: Still In the Cold and Dark

East Windsor resident asks for more communication from power company and township


To the Editor,

I live in East Windsor off of Conover Road off of Stonehedge Road. We are still in the dark and cold, even though others around us have power back. On Conover Road the tree that had been blocking the road hasn't been cleared in four days. I'm not sure if that's a part of our problem, but I'm sure it continues to be quite dangerous.

The thing that really frustrates me is the complete lack of any information from either JCP&L or from East Windsor Township. Just having some feedback would eleviate much of our uncertainty.

Please post on your websites your current plans for our area and the status of repair plans for the areas still not being served. I understand we need to be patient, but your response will be most appreciated.

-Rochelle Portalatin

East Windsor resident

ewrezz November 02, 2012 at 09:30 AM
I agree- updates would be helpful. JCP&L's automated msg-informing its customers that it may take up to 10 days is unacceptable. I find it difficult to believe that JCP&L does not have a way to communicate status updates with all the modern technology that exists. Do municipality reps. receive updates?
ewrezz November 02, 2012 at 10:09 AM
BTW, many thanks to the EW Patch for providing status updates & information. It is truly appreciated.
paul schulke November 02, 2012 at 10:53 AM
The problem with getting updates about specific neighborhood power restoration is that no one can predict when or which houses will get their power back when the power grid has been broken by a disaster. You misunderstand technology if you think a software program can keep us all updated. This is about a storm smashing our technology. Being patient means waiting up to 10 days as the "update" told you. The 1% is not getting any special information that you are not...
William S November 02, 2012 at 11:09 AM
I agree with both the comments and first of EW Patch, A BIG TAHNK YOU for all the information you have provided! I am out of town and coming home tonight to what I believe is a situation with no power. Having updates from JCPL would allow for a better Personal Recovery Plan. If I know I will be without light or heat, I can make arrangements to be in a place where I can have this. More informtaion from JCPL would be appreciated. Also, is East Windsor going to give a grace period for tax payments? I hould be able to get my payment in over the weekend. Still I got my hands full and i am sure many people have been impacted financially by this crises.
M November 02, 2012 at 12:22 PM
If it is about software how do the post on their website how many people still don't have power Mr Techie
Chiefy November 02, 2012 at 12:53 PM
We are wondering why the local libraries that have power are closed. There have been people camped out @ the Hickory Corner library, charging their devices outside. If there is a very good reason for not opening the libraries to a desperate public, the county executive/local officials should give us that information.
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 02:08 PM
I called EW municpal office and they have no news.She has notime table nothing to say except everyone is working 24X7, If they are working 24X7 why dont i see any trucks in EW., Why the tree is still on conover road. How many days before we can get power. Some assessment JCPL did. Shame on you EW officers for not being able to provide any informations to your residents.
VMC November 02, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Nixil.com can be used for SMS doesn't require internet. http://local.nixle.com/city/nj/east-windsor/ Nixle both free and paid notification services for local police departments, county emergency management offices, municipal governments and their agencies. I wish our local government made more use of it
Bill S. November 02, 2012 at 02:21 PM
I have seen JCP&L just looking at the tree on conover apparantly waiting for the township to remove it. This is a disgrace. Day 5 and counting.
Mike S November 02, 2012 at 02:24 PM
I was told by November 9th we will have power in Ew
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 02:25 PM
How long to chop a tree - EW Municpality ? I am sure you or JCPL don't have to assess it for another 24-36 hrs before you get it removed.
Mike S November 02, 2012 at 02:33 PM
This is nuts. I live near Dutch Neck road and they told us we will have no power until November 9th. I wish the town would provide a little more information.
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 02:39 PM
where we would have power? Around dutch neck area or EW as in whole. JCPL even before the strom struck gave an estimate of 10 days before power went down. Poor Planning Poor Power company. We shud have more options.
Lsh November 02, 2012 at 02:41 PM
I agree completely and could not have said it better. When you drive around town, there is a complete absence of utility workers and city officials. Where are all the city inspectors that are willing to give tax payers tickets and fines for not maintaining municipal codes, but in times of disaster, no where to be found? Are they completely useless except to write tickets. jcp&l has given outrageous estimates and lack of township specific information. Very disappointed in both parties particularly for having one of the highest taxes in the area. The patch has been more forth coming with information than the city officials and their website. Very frustrating. The inspectors should be assessing the damage and communicating with the power company and its city residents. They should be our representatives or liaisons. Be more visible! LSH
sb November 02, 2012 at 02:48 PM
I think its a disgrace that they don't open the library as a safe place for people to go and recharge their devices and warm up. In case anyone hasn't noticed the temperature is dropping and even in the day our house only reaches 59 degrees. It is also shameful that there has been no shelter information provided or other information on where residents without power can stay warm. Temps are projected to drop into the 20's next week and if we still don't have power, how is my family suppose to stay warm. We can't afford to stay in a hotel for a week!
sb November 02, 2012 at 02:55 PM
I want to be clear too that I understand this stuff takes time, but how about providing some resources for the community while we are waiting! How did that get left out of the disaster planning?
ewrezz November 02, 2012 at 02:58 PM
Really, Paul??? I just received a billing statement via e-mail from JCP&L yet they can't give us an estimated date of repairs. I do not expect them to provide exact information. I am simply asking JCP&L or the township to provide general updates, this way we can plan accordingly. Stop defending JCP&L's poor business practice.
Still without power November 02, 2012 at 03:04 PM
Think for a moment... the staff may not have a way to get to the libraries to fully staff them. In addition, look at the crowds at Barnes and Noble - can you imagine what the library would be like? Get a grip. We will make it. Charge your phones in the car while waiting in line for gas!
ewrezz November 02, 2012 at 03:13 PM
SB, I hope you don't need to call but if you are looking for shelter placement, you should call 211. Check out East Windsor's site for alerts/updates on charging devices and other relief info: http://www.east-windsor.nj.us/ Best of luck to you and your family.
Martin November 02, 2012 at 03:16 PM
I'm by Conover Rd and without power while there has been no damage to my area I've been listening to Nj101.5 and I have heard no announcements about EW or the mayor making any announcements about people with no power. In Canada at least in my town the mayor would make announcements for those without electricity . As for JCPL even before Sandy my block would lose power during strong winds so I'm not surprised at their garbage service.. At least Taco Bell is up right?
ewrezz November 02, 2012 at 03:16 PM
Just incase you can't access the page, this is the info. on their site: Both ice and water will be available for distribution to East Windsor residents at the East Windsor Volunteer Fire Company 2 at 69 Twin Rivers Drive between 8 AM and 8 PM beginning on Friday. Residents can also continue to charge cell phones, smartphones and PDA’s at this location from 8 AM to 8 PM.
JZ November 02, 2012 at 03:37 PM
from EW official site update on 11/01: We hope to have a better understanding tomorrow, November 2, as to when power will be restored in the remaining areas of East Windsor. update on 10/31: We hope to have a better understanding tomorrow November 1 as to when power will be restored. did they begin to copy and paste?
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Mayor miranov where are you. I hope you get to read these messages and act on it Do you have any estimates on when power can be restored. I love the messages posted on your website saying 24 more hrs. Mine and other EW residents patience have run out. Where are the JCPLTrucks for that matter where are you and the officers?
Maria November 02, 2012 at 04:41 PM
She is resting comfortably in the warm office while people in East Windsor are waiting for Power.
VMC November 02, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Seriously? I'm pretty sure she is in contact w/ JCP&L. Lets put the blame in the proper place; JCP&L has never been accused of handling emergency situations very well. Their PR and public communication leave very much to be desired. Just compare JCP&L communication to the other FirstEnergy companies. https://www.firstenergycorp.com/content/customer/outages_help/Sandy.html#ETR. The others like Met-Ed and Pennelec give you areas and times for when power will be restored... JCP&L you get "The majority of customers will be restored by next Wednesday, November 7. Customers in the hardest-hit areas can expect to be restored throughout the following week." To be frank in comparison to other twps I have lived in EW muni workers are so much more on top of things. Muni crews were out during the storm keeping drains clear, marking down trees, etc - and as soon as the storm relented I saw them already removing debris and trees. I am happy w/ our Muni response... power company I am not at all happy
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 04:59 PM
VMC Do you work for EW muni ? I called one this morning and she was clueless.She has no idea whats going on.
Tanya November 02, 2012 at 05:00 PM
And what am I going to do with all that Ice now. FOod is already stale and has been thrown. I don't want to feel more cold than I already am.
Gary H. Lucas November 03, 2012 at 01:14 AM
There are still over 1,000,000 people without power in NJ. EW and Hightstown lost power, and some trees, and that is pretty much it. Some areas are not going to see power possibly for months, take a look at the damage on the barrier islands if you don't believe that. So what would you do if you were in charge? What I'd do is ignore all the complaints. People responding to complaints are NOT working on getting your power back on! Next I'd assess all the damage, that would be those cars and trucks roaming around that you don't see doing any work. Then I'd put all the resources fixing damage that will get the most people back on the quickest. That means if fixing one circuit with 1000 people on it, and doing nothing about the street next door with 10 homes, then that is what we need to do. So after 10 days we might have 900,000 more people with power, and 100,000 really pissed customers calling 24/7. Those 100,000 are probably going to have to wait a lot longer, either because there are thousands of little fixes needed, or because there is some truly enormous damage that can't be fixed quickly. This is the nature of disaster recovery. However, I'm not letting the power companies off the hook. I think they have done a really poor job of managing their physical assets. I think deregulation was a big part of that. In the mean time, figure that the world has changed, and you need a generator!
Yevgeny November 04, 2012 at 03:43 AM
I live at the Orchard apartment complex on One Mile Road, behind the Target. There are around 600 apartments here and we still have no power. The lack of power means we have no heating, and since the apartments have only electric stoves, no cooking! How is this not a priority? I see families with children, cooking on improvised campfires and stones! The temperature is falling below 50f in our apartments, and we expect frost the next 3 nights... What's going on???
Marion G. November 08, 2012 at 05:02 PM
I agree that the libraries should have been open. Had the County had an emergency response plan in place, they could have opened the libraries, as many, many other towns who could, did. There were quite a number of local staff who would have come in with or without pay to staff the library for limited hours and services. The employees are smart, they are capable and they were willing. A plan has to be put in place by the County administration. It can be done and it can be managed if only the County would allow it. We have to pull together in difficult times!


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