Thousands of Atlantic City Electric customers still in the dark, and politicians want to know why

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 A tree toppled power lines on Orr Road in Blackwood, Camden County. Camden, Gloucester, Burlington and Salem counties saw the most damage from the ferocious storms that barreled through the region. (Atlantic City Electric photo)

A tree toppled power lines on Orr Road in Blackwood, Camden County. Camden, Gloucester, Burlington and Salem counties saw the most damage from the ferocious storms that barreled through the region. (Atlantic City Electric photo)

The power remains out for tens of thousands homes and businesses in South Jersey, and politicians are not happy.  

Once the electricity is flowing again, they said Friday, the investigation will begin.

Assemblyman Paul Moriarty, who represents hard-hit parts of Camden and Gloucester counties, said the response from Atlantic City Electric has been insufficient.

“I’m at the main firehouse at Washington Township right now, and they don’t have power,” said Moriarty, D-Gloucester. “They still don’t have power at the police station, and the municipal building in Washington Township also does not have power.”

New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney and other elected officials are calling on the Board of Public Utilities to investigate.

Lendel Jones of Atlantic City Electric said the utility is doing the best it can, handling more outages than during Superstorm Sandy.

“To have 200,000 people restored in three days we think is a really good effort on our part,” said Jones.

Of the approximately 280,000 customers who lost power at the peak of the storm,  Atlantic City Electric has restored service to about three-quarters of them. Power also has been restored to hospitals, said utility spokesman Frank Tedesco.

More than 1,000 crew members are working to restore torn power lines, he said.

Meanwhile, train service resumed between Atlantic City and Philadelphia Friday. Service had been halted since Tuesday because of storm damage to signal communications systems.

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