🌧️Gov. Phil Murphy urged residents not to underestimate the storm

🌧️Utilities are bring in extra line crews and forestry personnel for restoration

🌧️A State of Emergency goes into effect at 5 p.m. Tuesday

State and local authorities across New Jersey are mobilizing for Tuesday's heavy rain storm that could cause flooding and power outages.

New Jersey 101.5 Chief Meteorologist Dan Zarrow is expecting rain to develop late Tuesday morning and become heavier in the afternoon, filling up ready swollen rivers.

State of Emergency in effect

Gov. Phil Murphy said that a rainstorm in January is not usually a cause for concern. Not this time.

"This is one I would strongly, strongly encourage folks to not underestimate," Gov. Phil Muprhy said at a briefing about preparations on Monday. "We've seen with Ida and other storms that a lot of rain, high winds and flooding can cause not only a lot of  damage but put lives at risk."

A State of Emergency goes into effect Tuesday at 5 p.m. to allow resources to quickly be sent to where it needs to go. The declaration authorizes the governor to speed up assistance from state agencies and allows the director of Emergency Management to make resources available for rescue, evacuation, shelter and essential commodities.

The order also allows the National Guard to be activated and helps the state get federal assistance for cleanup from the storm.

The state of emergency does not close roads, require that residents remain in their homes or employers send their workers home early.

New Jersey State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan said that the state's search and rescue teams and marine unit will be standing by if needed for rescues.

Timeline of storm

Torrential rain will fall Tuesday evening with a big push of wind gusting to between 40-60 mph which could lead to downed trees, road closures and property damage.

A Flood Watch has been issued for all 21 counties of New Jersey, from Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday.

"For the northern half of the state, the big concern is water. Heavy rain may cause flash flooding, as drainage systems struggle to keep up. The threat of river flooding is high too. Runoff from rain AND snow melt will cause river levels to rise significantly," Zarrow said.

(L-R) BPU President Christine Guhl-Sadovy, Gov. Phil Murphy, and New Jersey State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan at press briefing 1/8/23
(L-R) BPU President Christine Guhl-Sadovy, Gov. Phil Murphy, and New Jersey State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan at press briefing 1/8/23 (Governor's Office via YouTube)

'Tens of thousands' of outages possible

Board of Public Utilities President Christine Guhl-Sadovy said her agency has been in contact with the state's utilities, which are calling up additional line, hazard crews and forestry crews to help with restoration. She urged customers who lose power to report it to their utility.

"It is quite possible we get tens of thousands of outages. We would be the combination of a lot of water and high winds," Murphy said, adding that JCP&L customers are most likely to lose power because of higher wind gusts in their service area which includes the shore.

Murphy did not know how NJ Transit service would be impacted by the storm.

The governor did not anticipate the swearing-in of the new Legislature or his State of the State address would be affected by the storm.

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