Nesquehoning Coped Without Electricity; Power Restored

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NESQUEHONING -- Parts of Carbon County continued without power Tuesday in the wake of the storm, and leaders in one community have been told electricity may take several days to restore.

From top of a hill outside of Nesquehoning at noon, not a single home had a light on.

Power here flickered on and off at around midnight.

"Finally, it just went off.  And the wind was horrendous," said Jen Hoffman outside her house on Stock Street, the main road that runs through town.  "We`ve never ever felt anything like that here, ever."

Newswatch 16 caught up to Hoffman after she drove ten miles to Lansford to get coffee and a newspaper.

She hoped power would come back by the time she got back.

But when she passed all the homes with no lights, she knew the borough had no electricity, and a deteriorating situation.

"It's cold and it's getting colder," said the mother of two.

By mid-morning Tuesday, crews cleared the main roads leading in and out of Nesquehoning.  But driving still had its dangers: no power, meant no working signal lights.

There was a different kind of danger across town.

The back up generator powering Carbon County's 911 dispatch center, and  its Emergency Management Agency had been up and running for 12 hours.

"If the generator breaks down, we`re dead in the water," said Carbon County EMA Director Mark Nalesnik.  "So this is a critical facility for the citizens of the County."

Nalesnik spent part of his day asking PPL to make restoring power to Nesquehoning a priority so the Emergency Management Center, and several care agencies for the elderly could return to normal.

"They said it could be up to two or three days," said Nalesnik.

"Oh no, I can`t handle that," Jen Hoffman replied when told how long power might be out in Nesquehoning.

Power was restored to the borough late Tuesday afternoon.

Hoffman and he neighbors no longer would worry about coping without heat, without a stove to cook, and with no television to entertain the kids.