Sunday, October 28, 2012

IMPORTANT: Storm Emergency News For NJ, Others

In seeking to address the public safety concerns set forth in Executive Order 104 issued by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on October 27, 2012, declaring a State of Emergency due to severe weather conditions, the Administration has announced the suspension of gaming activity as of 3:00 p.m. Sunday October 28, 2012 with the properties closing at 4:00 p.m.

“Division of Gaming Enforcement staff have been in constant dialogue with the casinos to ensure an orderly shutdown of gaming operations on Sunday,” said Governor Christie.  “They have also assured me that the necessary security, surveillance, maintenance operations and personnel are in place to secure the properties gaming equipment and assets.”

“I want to commend Governor Christie, state and local officials and the casino executives for their coordinated efforts towards protecting the safety of our visitors and residents of Atlantic City,” said Division Director David Rebuck.

For further information about safety precautions, evacuation routes and best practices, please go to

The Christie Administration announced that preparations have officially begun for the potential shutdown of NJ TRANSIT bus, rail, light rail and Access Link service, effective Monday, October 29.  This preliminary step is being implemented as the statewide transportation agency continues preparations for Hurricane Sandy.

“The safety of our customers, employees and the public-at-large is paramount,” said NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman and New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner James Simpson.  “By beginning this important process, NJ TRANSIT will be better able to support the state’s response to Hurricane Sandy by freeing up buses or other resources that may be needed for hurricane relief.”

During Hurricane Irene, NJ TRANSIT implemented a full-scale system shutdown spanning nearly 36 hours.  This decision is credited with saving billions in NJ TRANSIT assets, which enabled NJ TRANSIT to restart service with all equipment available for use.  Additionally, no customer or employee injuries were reported during this time.

The systematic shutdown of NJ TRANSIT service will require a minimum of 12 hours to complete.  The process requires the relocation and securing of buses, rail equipment and other NJ TRANSIT assets away from flood-prone areas.  It also requires complete coordination with state and local officials throughout the process.

It is important to specifically note that this step is being taken solely as a precautionary measure.  No final decisions have been made regarding any potential future service suspension.

Earlier today, Governor Christie announced system-wide cross-honoring of all rail, bus and light rail tickets starting Monday, 12:00 a.m. and continuing through Wednesday, 6 a.m.  This important step will allow customers holding NJ TRANSIT tickets to use alternate means of transportation to get to their final destination, such as PATH, PATCO and private bus carriers.  Due to the duration of the storm and the potential impact to the NJ TRANSIT system, this timeframe could be extended if necessary.


Rail and Light Rail Operations

·        NJ TRANSIT’s maintenance forces continue inspecting culverts, drainage pipes and rights-of-way to ensure they are clear of blockages that could exacerbate flooding and disrupt service.

·        NJ TRANSIT rail and light rail crews and equipment are on standby to respond to downed trees, wires and flooding.

Bus and Access Link Operations

·        NJ TRANSIT Bus and Access Link maintenance and support staff will be on standby 24/7 to respond where needed.

Customer Service

·        Customer Service Field Offices will extend their hours of operations if necessary.

·        The Transit Information Office (TIC) – NJ TRANSIT’s call center, is also prepared to extend its hours if necessary.


·        For the latest travel information, customers should listen to broadcast traffic reports, visit or access our Twitter feed at @NJ_TRANSIT prior to starting your trip.

·        In the event of service delays or adjustments, including the suspension of service, NJ TRANSIT will provide the most current service information via the My Transit alert system, which delivers travel advisories for your specific trip to your cell phone, PDA or pager.  (If you are not yet a My Transit subscriber, we encourage you to sign up at  Service information is also available by calling (973) 275-5555.  

·        Listen closely to public address announcements at stations for late-breaking service information.

·        Build additional travel time into your trip to a station, terminal or bus stop.

·        Stairs, floors and platforms can be slippery, so please use caution when walking along wet surfaces or any outdoor surface exposed to the weather. Use extra care when boarding or exiting buses and trains.

·        Report slippery or unsafe conditions to bus operators, train crews or to NJ TRANSIT staff. 


NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 895,000 weekday trips on 261 bus routes, three light rail lines, 12 commuter rail lines and through Access Link paratransit service. It is the second largest transit system in the country with 164 rail stations, 61 light rail stations and more than 19,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.

The Christie Administration announced that tolls will be suspended on the northbound Garden State Parkway and westbound Atlantic City Expressway starting at 6 a.m. Sunday in order to facilitate the travel of residents and visitors leaving coastal areas of New Jersey in advance of Hurricane Sandy.

Tolls will be suspended until further notice on the northbound Parkway from Cape May to the Driscoll Bridge and on the full length of the westbound Atlantic City Expressway.

For real-time updates about travel conditions in New Jersey during the storm, motorists are encouraged to call 511 from a hands-free mobile phone or visit

The New Jersey Department of Human Services Commissioner Jennifer Velez today advised aging residents and individuals with disabilities and their families to finalize their emergency preparedness plans in advance of Hurricane Sandy’s expected landfall on Monday.

“As many of us learned during Tropical Storm Irene, severe weather can cause critical challenges for individuals who depend on personal care assistance, home health aides or generators for vital life-care services,” said Commissioner Velez. “lt’s essential to have an disaster plan in place that lists alternative-care support options, evacuation strategies and emergency contact information.”

There are a variety of resources available to people interested in making arrangements for these types of crisis situations. The federal government website and the state Council on Developmental Disabilities has issued an emergency preparedness booklet entitled ‘Get Ready for an Emergency’ that details the steps involved in creating a plan.

“It’s important to contact your caregiver/s to coordinate scheduling and the availability of medical therapies such as chemotherapy or dialysis,” added Velez. “If evacuated, immediately tell emergency personnel you have special needs and remember to bring your prescriptions or any assistive devices such as hearing aids, glasses, medical supplies or equipment.  We want everyone to be as safe as possible through the storm.”

It is recommended that emergency kits contain the following:

·        Emergency contact numbers

·        Water

·        Blankets

·        Flashlights

·        Batteries

·        Crank radio

·        Cash or travelers checks

·        Flares

·        Matches/lighters

·        List of prescription medications

·        Can opener/utility knife

·        Non-perishable foods

Individuals in need of evacuation should call their County Office of Emergency Management, located in the blue pages of the Yellow Book or county Area Agencies on Aging and Aging Disability Resource Connections at 877-222-3737. Call 911 only in the event of a medical emergency.

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