Icy Rain Disrupts Power, Trains, Driving in NJ
A state of emergency is in effect across New Jersey as freezing rain has coated roads throughout the central and northern portions of the state, interrupted rail service and cut power to more than 60,000 utility customers, a third of them in Mercer County.
State offices are closed for non-essential personnel and many schools are closed as well.
New Jersey power companies were reporting combined outages in excess of 60,000 as of mid-morning and all three are posting more specific information on their outage maps:
Ice on overhead wires has disrupted service on New Jersey Transit through much of the morning. Service resumed on Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast Line trains at middday, after suspension of several hours. That followed an earlier 90-minute suspension to allow repair of low-voltage problems between Philadelphia and New York. Trains have been operating on a limited schedule, with cross-honoring of bus and rail tickets because of the weather. Passengers were also being advised to exercise caution on slippery train platforms.
Buses are also running late because of the weather.
Gov. Chris Christie has issued the following statement: “(Today's) winter weather is expected to produce snow and ice, creating hazardous travel conditions and affecting areas throughout the state that are already recovering from yesterday’s storm. I’ve authorized state officials to continue all necessary actions to assist, and my Administration will continue monitoring conditions throughout the remainder of the storm."
The governor has also asked drivers to stay off the roads if possible "so that our first responders and public safety officials can safely respond to any emergency situations.”
Meanwhile, north Jersey received several inches of snow from the storm including 7.5 inches in Wantage and 5 inches in Highland Lake and nearly 5 inches in Butler and Rockaway according to National Weather Service observations.
New Jersey Fast Traffic reports many spinouts, unplowed roads and non-working traffic signals as well as fallen trees and transformers.
The speed limit on the New Jersey Turnpike has been reduced to 35 MPH between exit #7A (I-195) and the George Washington Bridge, The Garden State Parkway has a speed of 45 MPH from #105 (Eatontown) to the Driscoll Bridge and 35 MPH from that point to the New York State border.
Frozen precipitation was expected to change to all rain by mid morning before tapering off in the afternoon. Most of the state is under a Winter Weather Warning with a Winter Weather Advisory in effect for coastal areas.
Princeton police report 25 trees down and 14 streets with wires across them.
Hundreds of flights in or out of Newark Liberty, LaGuardia, JFK and Philadelphia have been canceled for Wedneday according to FlightAware.com.
Associated Press contributed to this report.
Text WEATHER to 89000 for watches, warnings and forecast updates to Monday's storm.