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Fewer than 50 Homes without Power in Franklin Lakes, Mayor Says

Frank Bivona said utilities were on track to have power restored for most residents before Saturday

Franklin Lakes is on track to have power back to most borough residents Friday, 11 days after Hurricane Sandy had its way with Northern New Jersey.

"The job is not done," Mayor Frank Bivona wrote Thursday evening. "The last two days we have a person from O&R onsite directing crews which was a tremendous help." 

The mayor told residents that Wednesday's nor'easter hadn't set restoration efforts back substantially.

Georgia Power crews were headed out of Franklin Lakes overnight Thursday and being replaced by Orange & Rockland crews that would be addressing two remaining outage areas.  

"Although we cannot guaranty that those final two areas will get power tonight, it should be [Friday] at the latest," Bivona said. 

The mayor claimed that fewer than 50 homes were still without power in Franklin Lakes as of Thursday evening, but urged residents without power to contact the borough so that everyone could be accounted for.

"We will continue to push until each and every resident is back," Bivona said. 

On Wednesday, crews from O&R and Georgia Power helped bring power back to a large portion of the remaining homes — as well as Ramapo High School.

Work there was slowed by the snowstorm, but resumed the following day.

The boroug's building department also issued a clarification for residents trying to figure out the sometimes-complicated maze of responsibility when it comes to who owns what in the electrical infrastructure: 

"O&R is responsible for repairing or replacing the service wire coming in from the street to the connection point on your house. However, the safe removal of tree limbs interfering with the service wire is the responsibility of the homeowner. At the request of the homeowner, O&R will detach the service wire free of charge while work is being done to safely clear tree limbs from the path of the wire. 

Otherwise, the service bracket and all the hardware running from the connection point of the service wire, down the side of the house (weatherhead, entrance cable, meter pan) and into the house, are your responsibility. An electrician can repair or replace that equipment, if damaged. Any needed repairs that are the responsibility of the homeowner must be made before O&R crews can restore service.

If power has been disconnected by O&R because of issues with wires or hardware that are your responsibility (see above), you will need to follow the following process:

  • Contact a licensed N.J. Electrical Contractor to reconnect the service wire.  The electrician should check the wire and panel to assure that when power is restored, the service is in proper working order.
  • When the wire is reconnected, please call the Building Department at 201-891-0048 X 1211 or 1220.
  • Inform the assistant that the service wire has been reattached and an inspection is requested.  Permit information needs to be filled out with the Building Department to create a record of repair and the license of the electrician.  An Electrical Inspector will follow up to assure that the repair is proper.
  • Upon completion of the inspection, the Inspector will send a "Cut In Card" to Orange and Rockland for power to be reconnected to the structure.
  • Please be advised that power will only be restored if your grid is powered.

Do not wait to make these calls until the grid is restored.  Do it now.

If you have any questions about these service restoration procedures:

  • If it is a question about O&R's service line, call O&R's Customer Service toll-free at 1-877-434-4100.
  • If it is a question about the Borough's process of inspection, call the Building Department at 201-891-0048, ext. 1211 or 1220."

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Joseph M. Gerace at Joseph.Gerace@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox every morning, sign up for our daily newsletter.

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