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Chester Borough Mayor Addresses 'Inadequate' JCP&L Response

Patch logo Patch 8/12/2020 Russ Crespolini
a traffic light hanging from a pole: Janet Hoven said she will be pressing for more details and for improvements going forward. © Shutterstock Janet Hoven said she will be pressing for more details and for improvements going forward.

CHESTER, NJ - Chester Borough Mayor Janet Hoven summed up JCP&L's response to the damage caused by Tropical Storm Isaias last week in one word: inadequate.

"When a storm such as this hits and crews have to come in from other states, the crew on my street was from Miami, a 19-hour drive, you already know you are to be out for at least three days," she said in a statement. "It seems that ever since Sandy, we have more problems. Perhaps there is still residual damage to transmission lines and sub stations."

Hoven noted that the tree removal over the past year did seem to reduce the number of downed trees, but not the number of large limbs in the vicinity of the lines.

"Wood power line poles should be replaced with concrete when possible. Concrete poles don't snap in two," she said.

Hoven was also quick to point out how the Chester Police and all first responders, CVFC, CFAS and OEMs were fantastic keeping the traffic moving and residents safe and attended to.

"Our community is so generous," she said. "So many of you with power reached out to those of us without power and offered generators, showers, water, refrigerator and freezer space and moral support."

Hoven also said several of the emergency calls responded to were generator related and implored residents not to install anything electrical without a permit, as permits allow an inspector to check a contractor's work to make sure work was done to code and is safe.

Hoven said she is hoping that this fall brings less need for emergency related conversations, but noted it is likely that she will. Another conversation Hoven was anticipating was with the power utility.

"JCPL execs have promised a meeting with Mayors, I'll let you know if that happens and solicit your thoughts as we were all less than pleased with the response," she said.

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