Lakewood Mayor Ray Coles responds to your ‘Ask The Mayor’ questions: Our Electricity

The following is an ‘Ask The Mayor’ question submitted to TLS, and the Mayor’s response. Email your questions for the Mayor to


Good Morning Mr. Mayor:

How can we get updates as to when electricity is going back on? Raintree is still without any power….JCP&L  should be able to give some kind of time frame.
Thank you.
Wishing you well.

Response from Mayor Coles:

Good morning,

We have been in constant contact with JCP&L since yesterday. The main problems they are encountering are in the Transmission Lines and substations. These must be repaired first.
Our Public Works Crews have been out removing as many treas and branches as possible, but they cannot remove any tree that is in contact with wires until JCP&L crews deem it safe.
I was on the phone with the Governor’s office an hour ago and asked that he  contact First Energy and have them immediately increase the number of crews working in and around Lakewood.
I stressed that It is not just a matter of convenience. We have store owners who are losing their inventory and many folks who need power for medical and other health issues
Ray Coles


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There are 13 Comments to "Lakewood Mayor Ray Coles responds to your ‘Ask The Mayor’ questions: Our Electricity"

  • Overbuild says:

    Does the Lakewood township take infrastructure issues into account when they approve development? or do they first approve then blame the problems that arise on everyone else? County, state, JCP&L, etc..

  • Get over it says:

    Hey @ overbuild, overdevelopment is great! That means fewer trees to come down & take down wires a storm!….NOT!

  • Charles Newman says:

    Issue is trees falling on electric lines. Developers cut down trees hence less tress to fall on power lines. Do you know how many MORE people would be out if there were all those trees falling on lines?

    • LkwdGuy says:

      on both sides of the coin, less development meaning less people per area would also mean less people without power in that space and lakewood didnt lose a much higher or lower proportion of power than any other area under jcp&l

  • Jon says:

    First, Mayor Coles, thank you for looking into the matter and for requesting more crews to work on this problem. I do have three questions on the answers you’ve furnished. 1. Why does a township or municipality have to get approval from a publicly traded energy company to remove trees? 2. I understand how transmission lines could be damaged from wind. But how would substations be damaged from yesterday’s weather, when there wasn’t any rain in our area. Substations are not built with trees surrounding them; and if they would be built with trees above them, then they are not properly protected and hardened against storms. The principal way substations sustain damage is flood inundation? When companies like ConEd speak of substation hardening, they talk about hardening plans for flood protection. Such as building dam walls to keep out water. We didn’t have a flood here in Lakewood, in fact the rain passed us by completely (at least I can attest for central lakewood, it was cloudy for a bit and then sunny, no rain), so why are substations damaged? 3. These power outages happen even without storms. We had a recent outage that did not have weather considerations. What explanations do FirstEnergy provide for the many outages that happen in Lakewood that do not occur during storms. Regards, and thanks.

  • Hello says:

    Mr. Mayor,
    Please just give a real time frame…. we don’t care why it happened, just when will it be fixed. Also seems to be a chronic problem….

  • shanda says:

    thank you mr. mayor. i just got my power back on now, and my sympathy goes out to all those still left without power! the governor should have been more proactive! especially during the hot summer months and cold winter, a loss of power can be very dangerous for many people, especially for older people. I think its actually more dangerous than Covid 19. Where was Murphy yesterday? There needs to be better legislation requiring the Electric companies to buuild better infrastructure. This happens in an industry which is entirely controlled by one company! There is no way another company can come now and start building power lines all across the town/state,(simply too expensive) thus we will be stuck with one power company forever! I’m not a fan of regulation of the private sector, but when it comes to such a basic and crucial necessity like electricity, the government should step in a require the electric company to do a better job, especially since this an industry that has zero competition. Maybe going solar is the only solution!

    • last energy says:

      First Energy has lost my trust over the past few years! Just last week they got busted for bribing politicians. The stock of the company plummeted! One of my worst investments ever!

  • home with kids says:

    Thank you, Mr. Mayor!
    Let’s hope this happens sooner than later!!!

  • Truth says:

    To Overbuild: the utility companies water, sewer, electric, gas) assess their capacity and ability to service added customers when a project comes to them for approval for service. If they don’t have sufficient infrastructure or capacity they should not enter into an agreement with the developer and should not give a “will serve” letter.

  • Truth says:

    To everyone who has not yet done so: please call JCPL’s outage automated hotline to report your outage. I don’t know if accurate but I’ve been told the more people from an area that call to report no power the more priority it’s given. If you look on First Energy’s online outage map, it’s showing some areas as only affecting 20-100 customers when in actuality there are hundreds! Call now- 888-LIGHTSS

  • Forest Ranger says:

    Ummm…. the problem was not caused by trees. It was a substation that literally services tens of thousands of people. In this case, it was Brick, Jackson, and Lakewood. For all you armchair electrical engineers you should know that a tree or even several trees falling on wires will not cause such a widespread outage. For all the angry people, you obviously have a problem dealing with frustrating situations and are not prepared mentally or practically in terms of how to handle them. Our Choshuva ancestors dealt with much worse, and they have scars that last a lifetime yet those who were able to make it through the horrible persecution have prospered with a positive attitude nevertheless. Upgrading infrastructure that is a legacy very different than the requirements just a few years ago is a very complex and expensive task. Just the planning is extraordinarily difficult. Be well, be safe, and, most of all, be prepared. Thank you for reading.

  • My2Cents says:

    I grew up in a town with much worse weather and win conditions than Lakewood, and can not recall a single instance when power was out for more than an hour.

    I have now been in Lakewood over 20 years and power outages are a regular occurence, and if there is a storm, than a power outage is almost garaunteed.

    Optimum is even worse. The State Utilities Board needs to step up, they have one job, and are not very good at it.