Christie: N.J. will have power by Saturday

Nov. 10, 2012 at 3:07 PM

TRENTON, N.J., Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Most New Jersey homes darkened by Hurricane Sandy should have power restored by Saturday night, Gov. Chris Christie said.

Christie made his comments Friday after touring the Jersey shore, which received severe damage from the superstorm, CNN reported.

More than 175,000 homes were still without power during Christie's visit. A power company spokesman was more cautious about when many homes might get their lights back.

Homes with saltwater damage will have to be inspected by electricians before power can be restored, said Chris Eck, a spokesman for Jersey Central Power & Light.

"We can't energize the system until we know the system is safe," he said.

An estimated 20,000 households in New York City and Westchester County, and 150,000 homes in Long Island and Queens, still have no power.

Residents of Long Island, who have been without power for 11 days, angrily confronted city officials at a rally Friday, but the officials blamed the Long Island Power Authority, saying LIPA was the only entity capable of turning the lights back on.

LIPA officials were not at the rally, but responded in a statement that more than 8,200 linemen and tree-trimming crews were making progress.

New York police began enforcing an alternating gasoline rationing system Friday. Drivers in the city have endured long gas lines, with some reporting waiting more than 8 hours to fill up.

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