Fortunately, the W2LJ household fared very well. We lost power a couple of times, maybe for about a 1/2 hour each time, but no more than that. My weather station recorded only about 1.3 inches of rain at my location and a maximum wind gust around 20 MPH. The lot on which my house resides is surrounded by some pretty tall trees, so I'm sure they break up and affect the wind coming at my weather station.
I say that because while I only had some twigs and a few minor branches fall out of my two trees, the greater part of South Plainfield saw more damage than my block received. There were roads closed with major limbs down in the streets and taking down power lines. Many homes are without electricity and the local power utility is saying it may not be until next Monday that power is restored everywhere.
Somerset County, which is our neighboring county and the one I travel through to get to work fared much worse. Lots of trees down and many traffic lights on State Highway 22 are out of commission. In fact, the highway (eastbound) was closed Tuesday afternoon because of downed trees and power lines. My commute home was a lot longer that evening as I was forced to take several detours throughout the county.
My son Joseph texted me at work when power went out for the first time. He also told me there was a wire coming from the house that was down in the driveway. I immediately thought it was the mains wire from the house that had snapped from the utility pole. Power came back on shortly, so that proved my initial thought was incorrect.
When I got home in the evening, it turned out that the wire was an old length of cable TV cable that was left hanging on the house from when we switched from Direct TV to Verizon FiOS service. I cut it down and discarded it. Interesting stuff - it looked like regular 75 Ohm TV coaxial cable, but it had an extra wire running down the length of it. You could see and feel a raised "hump" where that extra wire was placed.
Both Amateur Radio antennas made it through unscathed. In fact, the Butternut came through all the better. There were some overhanging branches from my neighbor's yard that were coming close to the vertical and would brush against it from time to time. It seems they didn't make it through the storm and must be laying somewhere in my neighbor's back yard. Except for one grabby vine, my Butternut is free and clear. I'll snip that vine with my tree pruner this evening, if it's not raining when I get home. Otherwise, that will go on the "To Do" list for this weekend.
72 de Larry W2LJ
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