SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Unlike last year, the blizzard of 2016 is living up to all the hype, and if anything the snow, wind and coastal flooding are exceeding weather prognosticators' estimates. South Plainfield by 1:00pm had over 15 inches of snow, and the unrelenting snow and wind showed no signs of letting up.
“I was out most of the morning getting updates from OEM Coordinator James Parker and DPW Superintendent Len Miller and all I can say is stay home.” said South Plainfield Mayor Matthew Anesh. “The entire State is under a State of emergency. The roads are all snow covered. Even 287 is completely snow covered. It’s bad out. We have all of our plows deployed. Today and tonight no one other than emergency personnel should be on the roadways.”
The winter storm has proved to be stronger than originally forecast for this area. The latest weather estimates have South Plainfield and towns throughout Central New Jersey in a 24 inch or more snow bullseye.
Winds of 20-30 M.P.H. with “frequent” gusts up to 40 M.P.H. are expected to continue through Sunday morning. The blizzard warning has been extended through 7:00am tomorrow.
South Plainfield roadways are totally snow covered, and mostly void of any traffic. According to South Plainfield Officials plows have been on the road since very early this morning.
TAP into has received reports that the main arteries are open, but negotiating small side roads and dead end streets is nearly impossible.
Public Service Electric and Gas (PSE&G) is reporting some power outages as the heavy snow weighs down power lines and tree branches.
In a statement, the utility said that while snow and wind normally don't pose a serious problem, icing on lines and trees can increase the possibility of downed wires and power outages.
These types of conditions also make it difficult for crews to get around, and they can't go up in buckets to make repairs if there are high winds, according to the utility.
PSE&G said it will respond to outages and no-heat calls around the clock – as quickly and safely as possible.
In advance of the storm, the utility advises customers to prepare an emergency kit that includes:
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
- Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Manual can opener for food
- Cell phones, tablets and other mobile devices that have been charged
It also urges customers to be cautious during and after the storm:
To report downed wires or power outages, call PSE&G's Customer Service line at 1-800-436-PSEG or go to their website at https://www.pseg.com/home/customer_service/outage_info/outage_grid.jsp.
To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, do not run any gasoline powered engine, including generators and snow blowers, in a garage or any other enclosed space.
Downed wires should always be considered "live."
Do not approach or drive over a downed line and do not touch anything that it might be in contact with, the utility said in the statement.