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Hunterdon County Man Managing Without Power The Old-Fashioned Way

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By Elizabeth Hur

STOCKTON, N.J. (CBS) – Power problems persist across our area and thousands remain in the dark since Sandy hit last week.

The latest power outage numbers as of late Monday night are as follows:

- PSE&G: 365,000
– JCP&L: 296,000
– PECO: 3,000
– PPL: 900

Among them is the entire borough of Stockton, Hunterdon County, NJ. Eyewitness News found one man surviving in the dark and cold, the old-fashioned way.

When is the last time you saw a Victrola record player in action? First made in 1906, Chris Stoddard picked one up at a flea market not long ago and over the last week, it became a staple at his house. It has been serving as the only form of entertainment, since it is low maintenance and uses no electricity.

Stoddard added, “Adds some levity when you’re dealing with all this.”

Walking into Stoddard’s Stockton home, truly felt like a visit to a quaint museum. We simply asked if we could see how he was coping and what he showed us was quite astounding. In addition to a Victrola, he showed us an oil lamp that works like a charm.

“This is what they used before they had electricity and we used it in every room,” Stoddard explained.

Then he pulled out an old style flash light and demonstrated how it still works as a flash light.

Stoddard and his neighbors have been in the dark since last Monday, the same day he moved into the new place. So he hasn’t had a chance to unpack much and he never imagined the vintage items he collected over the years that looked cool would actually come in handy.

Stoddard said, “After like 7 days we’re getting used to it but I guess we’re ready for power.”

At last check, JCP&L told Stoddard and neighbors power should be restored in their neighborhood by Wednesday. With news of an upcoming Nor’easter midweek, understandably, Stockton residents say they just hope they get power before Mother Nature strikes again.

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