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August 29, 2011
PSE&G Hurricane Irene Update: Aug. 29, 2011 at 10 p.m.
-- PSE&G is making substantial progress restoring power to customers affected by yesterday’s hurricane, which is the worst in the company’s history in terms of outages. Electricity is back on for more than 550,000 customers, while we continue to work to restore about 155,000 customers statewide. The company expects restoration of all customers within the next 4 to 6 days.
-- In addition to downed trees and wires, flooding has posed a major restoration challenge, especially in counties like Bergen, Middlesex, Somerset and Union.
-- Employees are drying and cleaning flooded substations so they can put circuits from those stations back on line and restore customers. Flood waters are preventing employees from entering a number of other areas. Customers, particularly in flooded areas, should be prepared for lengthy outages until flood waters recede and crews can safely enter.
-- PSE&G has 6,000 employees supporting the restoration effort, including crews from Florida, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee. The crews are working around the clock.
Flooded basements can pose a genuine safety risk. Customers should be cautious:
- If they lose electricity and their basement is flooded, notify PSE&G (1-800-436-PSEG (7734) and call their municipality. 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 customers are unable to do so, they should contact PSE&G or their 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.
- Customers should call PSE&G (1-800-436-PSEG (7734) immediately if they smell gas.
Customers who use portable electric generators 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. Customers who improperly install, operate or maintain a generator are responsible for any injury or damage suffered by themselves, their neighbors or utility workers.
To report a power outage, call PSE&G’s Customer Service line: 1-800-436-PSEG (7734).
Crews work to restore power to the largest numbers of customers first, taking into account “priority” customers, such as hospitals, police stations, fire stations, water and sewer facilities, communications facilities (TV, radio, and telephone), and customers on life-sustaining medical equipment. At the same time, the utility restores power to homes and businesses, starting with the circuits serving the largest number of customers.
Customers with a handheld device, or who are at an alternate location with power, can also report power outages and view the status of their outage by logging in to My Account at pseg.com. General outage activity throughout our service territory is available online at www.pseg.com/outagecenter and updates are posted on pseg.com during severe weather.
We have activated our Twitter page to keep the public informed about our restoration progress. Sign up as a follower at http://twitter.com/psegoutageinfo.
** The next update will be tomorrow about 5:00 a.m.
Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G) is New Jersey’s oldest and largest regulated gas and electric delivery utility, serving nearly three-quarters of the state’s population. PSE&G is the winner of the ReliabilityOne National Achievement Award for superior electric system reliability. PSE&G is a subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Incorporated (PSEG) (NYSE:PEG), a diversified energy company (www.pseg.com).