MORRISTOWN, N.J., Jan. 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) is prepared to respond to a large winter storm that could impact New Jersey and other parts of the East Coast beginning Friday. The forecasted high winds and heavy, wet snow have the potential to cause trees and limbs to fall into poles, wires and other electrical equipment, requiring JCP&L crews to make repairs in difficult conditions.
Company meteorologists are monitoring a weather system that could produce up to a foot of snow by the weekend, wind gusts of up to 60 mph, particularly along the Jersey shore, and the possibility of coastal flooding.
As a result, JCP&L has implemented its storm plan, including staffing additional dispatchers and analysts at regional dispatch offices, and is making arrangements to bring in additional line, substation and forestry personnel, as needed, based on the severity of the weather. In addition, substations in flood-prone areas are being reinforced with protection devices.
Electrical contractors also have been notified they could be required to assist with storm restoration efforts in JCP&L areas over the next several days. In addition, the company has been in contact with several utility mutual assistance organizations to determine if crews from other utilities would be available to assist, if needed.
"We are monitoring the weather conditions closely and are making plans to deploy resources and personnel to the areas that could get hit the hardest," said Tony Hurley, JCP&L vice president of Operations. "The ultimate goal of our pre-planning efforts is to help speed the restoration process and minimize any inconvenience our customers experience due to the weather."
Customers should never go near a downed power line, even if they think it is no longer carrying electricity. Extra caution should be used in areas where downed lines are tangled in trees or other debris. Motorists are cautioned to treat intersections with inoperable traffic signals as four-way stops.
Customers who are without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the "Report Outage" link on www.jcp-l.com. In the event of severe weather, customers should immediately report downed wires to their utility or their local police or fire department.
JCP&L customers also can subscribe to email and text message alert notifications to receive weather alerts in advance of major storms, and updates on scheduled or extended power outages. Customers can also use two-way text messaging to report outages, request updates on restoration efforts, and make other inquiries about their electric accounts. More information about these communications tools is available online at www.jcp-l.com/connect.
JCP&L is a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE). JCP&L serves 1.1 million New Jersey customers in the counties of Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren. Follow JCP&L on Twitter @JCP_L, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JCPandL or online at www.jcp-l.com.
SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.