Governor Christie To New Jersey: Thank You For Your Support And For Staying Home
Governor Christie: Good morning everybody. Great day today, suns out, temperatures should reach above 32 degrees, winds have diminished. We've gone through a good last 24 hours in terms of the emergency response from the state of New Jersey, I first want to thank the people of the state. Without having to use the heavy hand of government to put mandatory travel bans in place, trust in the good judgment of the good people of New Jersey, a voluntary travel ban, they stayed off the roads. For much of the time yesterday, as I was traveling around the state the only vehicles on the road were emergency vehicles from police, our snowplows throughout the state and my car. And so that was great and I want to thank the people of new jersey for staying off the roads. It was a big storm. 24 to 30 inches up here in the northern part of the state. 12 to 28 inches in the central part of the sate and 12 to 20 inches in south jersey. So everybody got hit fairly hard but news is that if you drive around the roads today the folks standing behind me and all of the folks they represent did an extraordinary job in clearing the roads and you can travel all across New Jersey today. It is all clear, and you can do that because of the hard work of the men and women standing behind me and the folks who are still out in the roads doing work right now. We are really happy to be able to say there was only about 100 or so people that were sheltered last night in public shelters in Atlantic, Cape May, and Camden Counties Ocean County as well. And we are very happy about that. We also are happy to report that our New Jersey Transit system will be back up and running around noon today. Bus, light rail and rail, and we had fewer than 300 accidents across the entire accident, which is a very, very small number and that is again a testimony to the folks staying off of the roadways. We had a high yesterday of 94,000 power outages across the state. We are down to 25,000 this morning. The bulk of those were in Cape May county, 18,000 in the Atlantic City Electric area. And those folks, you have about 90% of them will be restored by the end of the day today. We have about 3,000 up in Bergen County and we have about 4,000 in central New Jersey. The 4,000 folks in central New Jersey should be restored by this afternoon and we will see up in Bergen County I would assume that will be the end of the day today as well although the president of the BPU will continue to monitor that very closely and working with the folks in Bergen County to make sure their power gets restored quickly. The D.E.P. reports the high tide this morning was survived very well by the people of Cape May County. Only minor to moderate flooding, mostly street flooding. We don't see any significant property damage happening in Cape May County. Folks did have to leave because of lack of power in those barrier islands, in places like Sea Isle City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, North Wildwood. So for those folks went and sheltered with friends and family, some went to local hotels where generators were operating in order to stay warm last night. We are happy to report that there are so far no deaths in New Jersey connected with the storm. We for today I think the most important thing is for everybody to remember if you go out on the roads, you know, please respect the speed limits, very important. Because there is still going to be places where roads are slick. It is cold. We may still have some icing in places, we're working on continuing to salt in those areas but there may be slick spots. Please be careful. Take your time as you drive. You're free to go out and do what you want to do. Go to church, go to the supermarket, go to some of your kids sporting events if they have hockey games or basketball games. If those games are on, go and do it. If you don't have to go out, no reason to go out. There will be plenty of stuff to do around the house with the foot and a half to 2 feet of snow that landed throughout the state. Last thing is this, I feel fortunate to have the folks in my cabinet, the Lieutenant Governor, and all of the folks who work for the State of New Jersey, who worked so hard over the last 96 hours to get us ready for this storm and to carry us through it. It is our 17th snow emergency in my six years as governor. We know how to do this. And when you lead in a strong and direct way, as all of the folks standing with me did for their departments you get things done and you get things done very well. So for all of the people in New Jersey, thank you, for your support, over the last 24 hours in particular in staying home. And we look forward to a normal regular work week starting tomorrow.