By Tim Jimenez and Kristen Johanson
GLOUCESTER COUNTY, NJ. (CBS) — Sunday was just another day without power for tens of thousands of South Jersey residents, especially in Gloucester County, nearly a week after nasty storms tore through the region.
The frustration remains high for many Atlantic City Electric customers, in the dark since last Tuesday.
Gloucester County was hit the hardest, particularly Pitman, and the Townships of Mantua, Washington, Greenwich and Deptford.
Gibbsboro Ed Celia says Tuesday’s storm brought down trees that cut his power line in half.
“It’s frustrating, we got two flash lights for the kids, we usually use our cell phones for the light.” said Celia. “We lose power in the cell phone. Here you can charge to 100-percent.”
Impacted residents can go to three Red Cross reception centers in Gloucester County to stay cool, charge phones and get some water, food and other items. They’re the Mount Royal Firehouse, the Gloucester County Complex in Clayton and Kingsway Regional High in Swedesboro, all open until 8 p.m.
Celia brought his family to a Red Cross reception center, where any resident without power can come to get food, water and fully recharge.
“Red Cross is providing care and comfort in the form of, we have beverages, we have refreshments, we have food here.” said Laura Steinmertz, who is with the South Jersey Red Cross .
Steinmertz says they have teamed up with the Salvation Army and local officials to assist the residents.
“Some people stay for hours, and have been here every day.” said Steinmertz. “We have residents that come in with books, and they just go over to the table that they’ve been to the last few days and read their book or the newspaper and they take advantage of the charging stations and maybe have a meal.
A spokesman with the utility says the rain this weekend hasn’t helped the cleanup effort. Their goal is to get most of affected customers back on the grid by midnight Sunday. AC Electric customers can call 1-800-833-7476 for the latest.
In Burlington County, water is available at the Shamong Township Fire Department.