This story was updated at 10:20 a.m. with information from JCP&L's website.
After the first night of Hurricane Sandy, over 18,000 residences are without power in Freehold this morning.
JCP&L’s outage map shows that in Freehold alone there are 18,085 outages reported. Outages began in Freehold early Monday afternoon, and consistently continued throughout the day and night. Earlier Monday, some Freehold Borough residents got lucky when their power came back on for a few hours after it originally went out.
At 5:15 p.m. on Monday, JCP&L's outage map showed that outages tripled in a little more than an hour. At 3:45 p.m. there were 2,508 outages in Freehold Township while Freehold Borough had 19 outages. At 5:15 p.m. there were 8,053 outages in Township and 1,900 outages in Borough.
Outages began in Freehold around noon when 38 people were without power in Freehold Township and 297 were without power in Freehold Borough. At 2:35 p.m. the outages rose as the map showed 1,244 outages in Township and only seven outages reported in Freehold Borough.
Before the storm hit, JCP&L reported that residents could be without power for as long as 10 days depending on the damage. Residents should anticipate lengthy delays, JCP&L warned on its website.
"While assessment of the damage by utility workers will be ongoing, the slow-moving nature of the storm will slow the process and hamper the conduct of restoration work. Restoration times will be updated as the severity of the storm's impact on the electrical system is determined," the statement read.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations do not allow lineworkers to go up on poles to repair damage if winds are above 40 mph, which weather forecasts predict they will be Tuesday.