Queen Anne Road Residents Without Power, Demand Action from PSE&G
Conflicting messages from customer service, downed wire leave residents frustrated.
Queen Anne Road resident Elizabeth Boleman-Herring has a message for PSEG CEO Ralph Izzo.
“For what we pay you Ralph, get down to the corner of West Forest Avenue and Queen Anne Road in Teaneck now,” Boleman-Herring said Thursday morning as she stood next to a downed wire at the busy corner.
As electricity has come back to most of hard-hit Teaneck, residents Boleman-Herring and Dean Pratt remained without power late Thursday morning because of what they believe is a complicated repair project and a live wire lying on the sidewalk at Queen Anne Road and West Forest Avenue. The wire is surrounded by barricades and being guarded by a PSE&G worker from the company’s gas division. The pair have been without power since Saturday when a powerful early season snowstorm snapped branches and brought down trees, leaving thousands of Teaneck residents in the dark.
Calls placed to PSE&G’s customer service line have led to incorrect claims that power was restored and changing estimates on when the power would return, Pratt said.
“Every time I got the automated message they said power has been restored,” he said.
The outage has forced the pair to throw out food and left them without phone service.
"It's a nightmare," Pratt said.
When Pratt cut through the automated phone system to get a company representative, he was first told the problem would be fixed late Wednesday night, he said. That estimate has since changed to late Thursday.
As frustration mounted, Boleman-Herring took her plight to the street Thursday morning with a cardboard sign decrying what she said PSE&G’s customer service agent told her and calling the company's top executive a liar.
“Someone has to be last. ” the sign reads, quoting a PSE&G representative.
A PSE&G spokesperson did not immediately respond to a call for comment from Patch, but multiple workers have said the company doesn’t have enough crews to handle the volume of storm-related jobs. Crews from Florida and Georgia have been called in, the company has said.
The PSE&G gas division worker stationed around the clock at the Queen Anne Road site is powerless to fix the problem, Boleman-Herring said. The worker confirmed he was with the gas division and could not fix the line.
As Boleman-Herring began her sixth day without power, she wondered what it would take to bring a repair crew.
“You know the only way we’re going to get something done is if I jump over here and grab this wire,” she said.