At first glance, it’s impossible to tell how many trees fell that now block Wedgewood Lane right off Wynwood Drive in the township’s Rolling Green section.
It looks like one big one lying across the street but with a closer look, you’ll find more than one tree lying, broken branches, a fallen transformer, power lines hanging everywhere and even a split light pole.
And if you listen closely, you’ll hear the hum of generators up and down the street—even around to Buttonwood and Winding lanes.
Mayor Don Brauckmann said Wedgewood Lane is one of eight areas in Cinnaminson where trees are still down and tangled in power lines. Wedge-wood’s severity is definitely in the “top three” of township locations that need the most help, he said.
“We were starting to feel like we were at land’s end,” said Joe Galbraith, the only homeowner on Winding Lane without power. “We were starting to think maybe no one knows we’re without power.”
PSEG knows and officials told Brauckmann the power should be restored there sooner than the Nov. 14 date neighbors are hearing from automated update messages.
Galbraith is lucky though—his family’s wood burning stove has kept them warm, they are keeping cold food in a cooler with ice and their gas heater has given them hot water.
Despite having no power and not being able to go to work because of it, Bonnie Orth, on Wedgewood Lane, has taken in some friends from LBI and Surf City who can’t get back to their homes.
She’s cooking food on a grill on her front porch and had to drive to Pennsylvania to get supplies that are sold out around here.
“It’s bad over here,” said Orth. “We really take things for granted.”
It’s either her or her neighbor’s tree that knocked out the transformer causing it to light up the night sky Monday evening. The township hasn’t come to do work since PSEG needs to deal with the wires first.
A gray transformer lies busted on the street with yellow caution tape strewn about. Power lines are live, she said, and she’s worried there won’t be power for several more weeks.
She saw PSEG trucks out there Friday but no work was performed, she said.
If dealing with downed trees in front of his family’s home wasn’t bad enough, Eric Teitelbaum, 22, who lives on the corner of Wynwood and Wedgewood, was outside late Friday afternoon with a chainsaw and leaf blower.
A tree in his side yard toppled over in the same gust that caused the other trees to fall and the transformer to blow. The family hard a huge explosion and noticed some of the tree put a hole through their wall and took out their back deck. It also knocked down gutters.
“We slept in the basement that night,” Teitelbaum said.
His mother—a chiropractor who works out of a home office—hasn’t been able to take patients. They just got some power hooked up from a generator.
“We’ll have some lights,” Teitelbaum said. “I’m excited for that.”
Neighbor Cecilia Still is worried about trick-or-treaters, who will take to the streets Monday afternoon.
“It seems dangerous to have the trees in the street like that with wires hanging down for this amount of time,” Still said.
Brauckmann said if PSEG doesn’t handle the situation this weekend and the trees aren’t removed Monday, the township will “take every possible precaution to ensure safety.”
“If that means staffing people out there, then we’re going to have to staff people out there,” he said. “We’ll do what we have to do to safeguard those areas.”
The streets in Cinnaminson with fallen trees affecting wires are on:
Fernwood/Willow (not a township tree)
Windsor Court & Windsor Drive