Wednesday, February 14, 2007

St. Valentine’s Day storm bogs down Bayshore


A major storm system, which continues to dump snow and ice on the Bayshore, rolled in from the Ohio Valley overnight, on Wednesday, February 14.

Snow and freezing rain has clogged many roads throughout the area as public works employees continue their plowing and drivers traveling along local, county and state highways have reported treacherous conditions.

“Public works has put down about 35 tons of salt this morning,” Keansburg Borough Manager Terrence Wall said at noon on Wednesday. “We have six drivers out on the road and all the main roads are clear and we’re starting to work on the side roads now.”

Wall said the light winter left the borough with adequate supplies and budget reserves to handle the winter storm. He added the police department made itself available to assist borough employees trying to get to work.

“I heard that other towns had a delayed opening, but Keansburg opened on time and kept up the regular business operations,” Wall said.

At the time of this report similar figures for Middletown were not available. The township spokesperson, Cindy Herrschaft, was attempting to contact the director of public works, but she said that numbers might not be available until the storm had subsided.

However, the Middletown police were keeping busy with storm related calls, according to Lieutenant Cortlandt Best.

“We’ve had to respond to several accidents, but nothing serious,” Best said. “There are some downed wires and trees and some transformers have caught fire.”

According to eyewitness reports by travelers, Middletown-Lincroft Road, especially in the vicinity of Nut Swamp School and the Middletown Train Station were especially hazardous during the morning commute.

Hazlet police were faring a little better. A police dispatcher said there were no major problems to report.

Officials in the Keyport and Bayshore Hospital could not be reached for comment by the time of this report.

Power outages have affected several areas of Monmouth County, according to Jersey Central Power & Light Web site, According to the site, over 10,000 power customers are without power in Wall Township. Another 501-2000 customers in the Jamesburg, Middlesex County, and Morganville section of Marlboro Township are also without power.

There were no outages in Northern Monmouth County by Wednesday at noon.

The winter storm is expected to last into the later afternoon according to published reports on the Weather Channel’s Web site,

Temperatures are expected to top out at 31 degrees and drop to 14 degrees overnight. There is a possibility that the mix of snow and rain could continue into the evening.

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