Roads, power, NJ Transit — Essential snow information for March 22
TRENTON — The cleanup is underway following New Jersey's fourth nor'easter of the month.
"The top snow totals I have seen were on the order of 14 inches in central and southern Ocean County. Every county in New Jersey saw at least one report of 5-plus inches of snow," Townsquare New Jersey Chief Meteorologist Dan Zarrow said. He expects the last of the snow to be over by 8 a.m.
Zarrow said the heavy, wet snow is going to be very difficult to shovel.
"Make sure you take frequent breaks and don't overexert yourself," he said.
The thick snow, combined with high winds, brought down trees, tree limbs, utility poles, and power lines, plunging thousands into the dark.
Route 33 in Howell and Farmingdale and Route 9 in Lakewood were closed by fallen utility poles at the start of the commute on Thursday. The New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway posted reduced speed limits to allow for snow removal operations.
"The main highways are certainly passable, with a good amount of blacktop and some slushy areas. That may not be the case for your local or township streets," New Jersey Fast Traffic's Bob Williams said.
As of 6 a.m., the respective outage maps showed nearly 74,000 customers without power.
- JCP&L: 26,513 customers, mostly in Burlington, Middlesex, Monmouth, and Ocean counties, especially in Barnegat, Brick, Jackson, and Manchester.
- PSE&G: 95 customers.
- Atlantic City Electric: 47,143 customers, mostly in Atlantic, Burlington, Cumberland, and Gloucester counties.
"In addition to 180 internal linemen, Atlantic City Electric has an additional 131 overhead line contractors and 233 tree crew personnel working to restore service to the affected customers. More than 240 resources from Atlantic City Electric’s sister utility ComEd, in Chicago, are joining the effort to restore service to customers," ACE spokesman Frank Tedesco said.
JCP&L and PSE&G also have extra crews available for restoration in their respective service areas.
Many school districts are on a delayed opening Thursday, hoping to avoid using another snow day.
State offices are open regular hours, and a ban on commercial vehicles for Routes 78, 80, 280, and 287 was lifted at midnight by State Police.
- Rail, light rail, and buses operating on a normal schedule;
- Riders should expect some delays.
- A modified schedule is in effect on the Northeast Corridor.
- At Newark Liberty International Airport, 139 flights in and out were canceled as of 6 a.m.
- Nationwide, 1,561 flights are canceled thanks to the snow. "Airlines are finalizing their recovery plans and have cancelled 615 flights today as they work to recoup their schedules. More snow is expected this morning and it’s likely we’ll see delays as a result of strained de-icing capacity," FlightAware.com spokeswoman Sara Orsi said.