January 23, 2016 - 5:15 PM EST
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JCP&L Restoring Service to Customers Affected by Winter Storm

MORRISTOWN, N.J., Jan. 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) has restored service to more than 71,000 customers who lost power as a result of the massive snow storm and high winds moving through the state.  Currently, 16,000 customers are without power, the majority of which are in Monmouth and Ocean counties.

"We are responding to outages and making repairs, but the continuing heavy snow and gusting winds have made working conditions more difficult," said Tony Hurley, vice president of Operations. "Nonetheless, we will continue to work round-the-clock, evaluate outages and deploy resources as needed until all customers are restored."

Prior to the snowstorm, JCP&L reinforced substations in flood prone areas with protective barriers and water pumps.  Additionally, company employees are monitoring the substations through real-time video links.  There has been no flooding at JCP&L substations.

Additionally, JCP&L has taken the following steps:

  • Initiated update calls with officials         
  • Activated its Emergency Command Center
  • Activated its Incident Command System
  • Communicated with emergency management, officials, state officials, regulators, and local officials about storm preparation efforts
  • Arranged for additional contractor crews
  • Staffed additional dispatchers and analysts at regional dispatch offices

Customers who are without power are encouraged to report their outage by calling 888-LIGHTSS (888-544-4877) or through the following channels:

  • Website:  Visit www.jcp-l.com from a computer or smartphone
  • App:  Download JCP&L's free app for your phone
  • Text message: Text OUT to 544487. (New users will be prompted to register their account. Standard message and data rates may apply.)

Customers who report their outages can view their personal outage status by subscribing to receive FirstEnergy's text or email alert notifications, by logging in to their online account on the website or by texting STAT to 544487.  Customers who have not registered their account online can still review general outage information for their community on the company's 24/7 Power Center outage maps.  

JCP&L reminds customers to immediately report downed wires to their utility at 888-LIGHTSS (888-544-4877), or to their local police or fire department.  Customers should never go near a downed wire even if they think it is no longer carrying electricity.  Extra care caution should be used in areas where downed lines are tangled in trees or other debris.

In the event of an outage, customers can take these steps to stay safe and warm:

  • Bundle up in a room away from an outside wall using sleeping bags, blankets and warm clothing.
  • Use a sturdy fireplace screen when using a fireplace or wood-burning stove to prevent a house fire.
  • Never use a gas stove, charcoal grill or lantern intended for outdoor use inside your home. That could produce a buildup of deadly carbon monoxide gas.
  • Use battery-operated lanterns and flashlights for illumination rather than burning candles which present a fire hazard.
  • Never use a portable generator inside the house or a closed garage. Ensure the proper generator is selected and installed by a qualified electrician. While operating a generator, power coming into the home must be disconnected to prevent power from the generator from being sent back on to the utility lines and endangering utility workers.  View more generator safety information.

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.

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/jcpl-restoring-service-to-customers-affected-by-winter-storm-300208799.html

SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.

Source: PR Newswire (January 23, 2016 - 5:15 PM EST)

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