Cops, Courts and Fire Weather

Area Grapples With Storm Aftermath, But River Not Expected To Flood

Rain and strong winds hit the area hard.

The Delaware River in Solebury Township on Wednesday morning.
Credit: Tom Sofield/NewHopeFreePress.com

A powerful storm that swept through Bucks and Hunterdon Counties brought heavy rains and strong winds.

The storm lead to widespread flooding in low-lying areas, power outages, and downed trees and wires.

By Tuesday night, approximately 950 electricity customers in New Hope Borough, Lambertville City, and Solebury Township were left without power. However, work by PECO and Jersey Central Power and Light saw the number reduced to about 250 by 10 a.m. Wednesday.

In addition to power disruptions, Verizon and Xfinity customers experienced outages throughout the area.

Although the Delaware River’s water levels were higher than normal in New Hope Borough, Lambertville City, and Upper Makefield Township, authorities did not anticipate major flooding. However, in Trenton, the river was expected to reach action stage by Wednesday night.

In response to the power outages, the City of Lambertville opened the Lambertville Free and Public Library on Lilly Street from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and the Phillip L. Pittore Justice Center on South Union Street from 10 a.m. until further notice as warming and charging stations, according to city officials.

Solebury Township Police reported multiple road closures on Wednesday morning, including Route 202 between Ingham and Lower Mountain Road, and River Road between Route 232 and Aquetong Road. Additionally, River Road between Laurel and Cuttalossa roads was also closed.

Several other roads had reopened after being closed overnight.

In nearby Upper Makefield Township, police said 100 Thompson Mill Road to the Wrightstown Township line, 93 Buckmanville Road, and 118 Walker Road were blocked due to downed trees and wires. The roads were expected to remain closed until PECO could complete its work.

River Road between Barlow Ridge Road and Lookout Park and River Road between Jonathan Way and Francisco’s on the River were closed due to flooding in Upper Makefield Township.

“We hope that River Road will be open later this morning, but Mother Nature may have other plans. We know this is inconvenient, but it is for your safety,” Upper Makefield Township police said.

The storm’s impact also led to delayed school openings in the New Hope-Solebury and South Hunterdon Regional school districts.

Bucks County authorities said there were approximately half a dozen water rescues between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, but no serious injuries were reported.

Sue Rodriguez, who was traveling from Bucks County Wednesday morning to get to her bus driver job in Philadelphia, said she was pleased to see downed limbs and tree already cleared from the roadways. However, she was surprised to see so much street flooding.

“The only thing I have to tell people is to stay out of the flooded roads,” she said. “Don’t do something that will hurt you and your family.”

The National Weather Service’s regional office warned of another storm expected Friday night through Saturday. New rainfall could exacerbate the current flooding and bringing strong, possibly damaging winds.

A Wind Advisory is also in effect for later Wednesday as strong winds were expected to return.

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Alex Irving & Tom Sofield

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