YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Officials throughout Bergen County are urging residents not to do any tree cutting of their own, after a 55-year-old man fell from a ladder and had to be hospitalized.
CLIFFVIEW PILOT photo by Jason Occhipinti
For proof of the danger, you need only look at CLIFFVIEW PILOT video of a dead electrical box that exploded after its power returned.
The victim was “attempting to clear tree limbs on a ladder using a chain saw,” Wyckoff Police Chief Benjamin C. Fox said.
He added that other people “have also been observed trying to clear trees or limbs that are entangled with wires.”
“Residents should absolutely not attempt to do any tree cutting if the tree or limbs are entangled with wires,” the chief said. “Wires in the tree could be an electrical hazard. Additionally, the ground is icy and slippery.
“The use of ladders has to be done with extreme caution to assure that the base of a ladder does not slip while it is against a tree or building while attempting to do any sort of work,” he added. “You need to be patient and wait the arrival of utility crews.”
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Officials countywide are hoping people realize that, as power returns, wires that appeared to be dead will spark.
A downed wire that has been out for several hours could burst into flames when re-energized. If it’s near a gas line, there is a potential for catastrophe.
The lines “some of which cannot be seen because they are under the snow, would cause instant electrocution if stepped on,” Fox said.
For that reason, the chief prefers parents not take their children trick or treating today.
“There are too many locations where serious, very serious conditions exist,” Fox said. “Plan an alternate activity that is safe, and make it a fun Halloween in some other way.”
Teaneck and Mahwah continue to be one of the areas hardest hit by the weekend snowstorm, and authorities throughout North Jersey are urging extreme caution if your children are trick-or-treating today. READ MORE….
Because it’s unclear how quickly the utilities can restore power, no plans have been made to reschedule Halloween activities in any town.
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