Thousands Without Power in Jersey After Storm

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A fast-moving storm packing winds of up to 100 mph ripped through the city Thursday, knocking down trees and power lines, snarling traffic, tearing off roofs and leaving one person dead. Send your videos to isee@nbcnewyork.com. (Published Friday, Sep 17, 2010)

    Thousands of people were without power early Thursday night after some powerful, fast-moving storms roared through the state.

    No injuries were reported. But authorities said the storms — which contained strong winds, heavy rains and dangerous lightning — knocked down trees and power lines in many towns and caused some moderate property damage. The weather also forced the cancellations of some sporting events, including several high school football games and minor league baseball playoff games in Trenton and Lakewood.

    About 36,000 customers statewide were without power as of 9:15 Thursday night.

    Jersey Central Power and Light said about 12,000 customers had no service, with areas of western Monmouth County and northern Ocean county the hardest hit. Meanwhile, about 10,000 PSE&G customers had no service, with most outages in Middlesex County. About 14,000 Atlantic City Electric customers were in the dark.

    Utility officials said most customers should have power restored by late Thursday night.

    The storm hit southwestern areas of the state around 5 p.m. and quickly moved north, spawning winds that reached more than 60 mph in some areas. There were reports of funnel clouds in central Jersey and the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for the region, but forecasters said it did not appear that any tornados had actually occurred.

    Perth Amboy Mayor Wilda Diaz declared a state of emergency in her Middlesex County community, ordering city employees to launch a "massive cleanup."

    The storm was also affecting travel in some areas, as police directed traffic in areas where the storm knocked out traffic lights.

    NJ Transit reported delays of 20 to 30 minutes on the North Jersey Coast Line outbound from Hazlet to Long Branch and inbound from Middletown to New York due to downed trees. Normal service was restored around 7:45 p.m., and no further delays were reported.

    Meanwhile, storm-related delays — some as long as an hour — were being reported at Newark Liberty International Airport and other area airports, mostly involving arriving flights.