Franklin Lakes Mayor Frank Bivona told borough residents on Friday that all across town power was back, almost two weeks after Hurricane Sandy ripped through our area.
Here's his message, in full:
At this time, we believe that power has been restored to all residents, except for three homes for which O&R crews have been assigned for tonight. A few were lucky and never lost power, some were fortunate to have power restored in just a few days, but the vast majority of residents were without power for 7 to 11 days! I won't get into the performance of O&R, that will be addressed another day. However, I would be remiss if I didn't mention our friends at Georgia Power. Without the leadership of our O&R restoration coordinator the last three days and the army of trucks and workers from our friends down south, I'm not sure where we would be right now.
Now that the lights are back on and the homes are starting to warm up, I can say how proud I am to be part of a community who pulled together as one during this crisis. Our Office of Emergency Management did an extraordinary job coordinating our resources. Our police, fire, and ambulance crews were great as usual, braving the storms, keeping people safe and providing emergency services. Our DPW workers also worked through the two storms - clearing roads, clearing people trapped in homes and making sure our roads were safe for travel. Our Community Emergency Response Team, yet another volunteer group, manned our comfort stations and aided in the recovery process. Our Borough employees carried on with normal duties while assisting wherever possible, including the important task of taking all of your calls for information and assistance, and getting the word out through eblast, Facebook, website and even hard copy at key locations throughout the Borough. Our schools and Library missed some time but rallied after getting power, helping our families get back to a more normal routine. They even joined with the Borough, in the midst of all of this, to hold an impromptu "Trunk or Treat" session for the kids so that an ill-timed storm wouldn't ruin yet another Halloween.
Just as important, we had neighbors helping neighbors. So many residents with power reached out to neighbors without and provided a place to shower, sleep, or just a hot meal. One of our religious institutions who had power even held dinners for those in need. And we went outside our borders to help others. Our firemen assisted neighbors with rescue workers and a Borough rescue boat. Our Ambulance Corps organized a delivery of much needed goods to those in need.
We were uncomfortable, inconvenienced and very frustrated. But many had it much worse as a result of this storm and are still trying to recover - some have lost their homes and belongings. I, for one, count my blessings and have gained a greater appreciation for the things we take for granted each day.
Thank you for being remarkably patient during the recovery period and thank you for the community effort that makes Franklin Lakes a special place to live.
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