Press Release
Senator Kip Bateman Senator Kip Bateman (R-16)
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Contact: Brad Schnure / (609) 847-3600
November 4, 2011
Bateman: JCP&L Will Have to Answer for Inadequate Storm Response

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Nearly a Week After Snow Storm, Many Residents Remain Without Power

Senator Kip Bateman (R-16) has called for hearings to investigate why thousands of JCP&L customers remain without power nearly a week after service was disrupted by the October 29 snow storm that hit New Jersey. According to information released by JCP&L on Friday, nearly 15,000 of its customers remain in the dark six days after the storm passed.

“Following the lengthy outages that plagued thousands of state residents as a result of Hurricane Irene in August, New Jersey utilities had pledged to develop better response plans for future storms,” said Bateman. “With thousands of JCP&L customers still in the dark nearly a week after the season’s first snow storm, it appears that at least one utility has failed to respond as customers were promised. I intend to make sure that we find out why.”

Bateman has called for hearings by both the Legislature and the state’s Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to examine the lengthy outages.

The Senator said that calls from constituents who remain without power continue to flood his office in search of help.

“Residents who remain without power are irate, and for good reason,” said Bateman. “They feel like JCP&L’s response to this snow storm wasn’t any better than that after Irene. Many good people who wouldn’t otherwise complain have told me that they feel like they have been misinformed by the company and even lied to. It’s clear that the concerns of all of those people need to be addressed.”

Bateman noted that with the official start of winter still more than six weeks away, it will likely prove to be a long snow season that utilities had better start preparing for now.

“I sincerely hope that every utility in the state is taking a long hard look at their emergency storm plans right now,” added Bateman. “Because if they don’t, and we have another failed response like this one, I’ll use every single resource at my disposal to make them wish that they did.”

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