The number of Bernardsville households left without power was down to about 227 out of 3,500 JCP&L customers on Sunday evening, but Borough Mayor Lee Honecker said that, two weeks after Hurricane Sandy, he considers that number unacceptable.
On Monday at about 10:30 a.m., the JCP&L website said that 148 Bernardsville customers remained without power, as were 83 customers in Bedminster.
Honecker said he drove around the borough prior to Sunday's 4 p.m. conference call with Jersey Central Power and Light and found that the Twin Lakes area, including Hillside Avenue, Lakeview Drive and other nearby streets appeared untouched by restoration efforts.
Although he said that some crews had been spotted around Round Top Road and the adjoining Laurelwood development, that area also remains in the dark.
Honecker said that JCP&L crews had told him that they would work through the night to restore power to remaining borough homes, but that parts of the town wouldn't be lit up by Monday.
About 18 percent of borough homes had been without power on Saturday night, he added.
Somerset Hills schools to return to normal schedule on Monday
The without power before Friday, when middle school and Bedwell Elementary students attended split sessions at Bedwell, has regained power, Honecker said.
The Somerset Hills School District website says that Monday will be a normal day for students in the regional school district, and lunch will be served. However, some bus routes serving the three schools, listed on the website, still will not be operating since some roads may not be accessible to the buses.
Mayor doubtful that JCP&L will be able to fulfill pledge that N.J. homes will be restored by midnight
In a public service announcement sent out by Honecker on Sunday evening, he said that JCP&L was continuing to maintain the "vast majority" of New Jersey homes would be with power by midnight that night.
Honecker said he and Police Chief Kevin Valentine were in doubt that deadline would be met. "Given what I have heard on today's call from other mayors, town administrators and officials, we are not alone in our feelings," he said in the announcement.
In an interview later, Honecker said that the power company workers "are the ones that have to produce."
Borough officials are asking any resident who does not have power restored by midnight, to do two things as quickly as possible:
- Call JCP&L at 1-888-544-4877 and give them your name, street address and JCP&P account number, if possible. The mayor said that while some have may already have done so, residents are being asked to do it again to get into their system.
- Residents should try to email, or have someone else email, the same information to the Bernardsville Police Department at firstname.lastname@example.org. "We will need to know what areas are still affected so we can get it to JCP&L as well," he said.
"The purpose is to get JCP&L here right away to complete any restoration needed to be done," Honecker said. He said the borough is trying to make sure the power company doesn't miss anyone.
Honecker said he was told by JCP&L representatives that Bernardsville, Harding Township and elsewhere in the Somerset Hills was hit by the epicenter of the Oct. 29-30 storm.