Union County Year In Review: The Biggest News Events
In the last few months alone, our town and surrounding areas were hit by an Earthquake, Irene, and a freak October snowstorm. Here, we recap those and other stories from 2011.
April 3, 2011 — House Fire at Runnymede Parkway "Under Control," Says Chief
The cause of a residential fire that began in the back of a two-story home at 176 Runnymede Parkway on Sunday, April 3 is still under investigation. While no injuries were reported, the house is uninhabitable, at least for the evening, said New Providence Fire Chief Ralph Parlapiano, who received the call at 4:52 p.m.
April 15, 2011 — Home Fire Causes Significant Smoke Damage
A gas leak triggered a fire in a New Providence home at approximately 3:30 p.m., according to New Providence fire officials. The flames were under control by 4 p.m. New Providence Fire Chief Ralph Parlapiano said the fire was caused by a gas leak in the kitchen of the home at 105 Madison Ave. The rest of the neighborhood is not at any risk.
August 23, 2011 — Update: Earthquake Jolts New Providence, Area Towns
New Providence and surrounding towns were rattled by tremors from a 5.9 magnitude earthquake that occurred 35 miles northwest of Richmond, VA at 1:51 p.m., which was confirmed by the US Geological Survey. Aftershocks were reported in Virginia about an hour afterward, while Tremors from the quake were felt in New Providence and across the state.
August 24, 2011 — Local Residents React to Earthquake Tremors
Patch hit the streets of New Providence to find out where people were and what they were doing when a 5.9 magnitude earthquake rocked Virginia, sending tremors up the eastern seaboard. Local residents describe their experiences in our video.
August 27, 2011 — Office of Emergency Management Alerts New Providence Residents
Chief Buccelli alerted local residents to a state, county and local state of emergency, and the travel ban for all non-emergency vehicles until further notice.
August 28, 2011 — New Providence OEM: Refrain From Calling About Power Outages
While many residents remained without power following Irene, the New Providence Office of Emergency Management said JCP&L had been notified about outages in the borough and informed residents that a travel ban was still in effect.
August 28, 2011 — PHOTOS: New Providence After Irene Hits
The morning after Irene hit, there were downed trees and power lines blocking roadways throughout New Providence. Many borough roads were also flooded, while some stores were open by mid-afternoon.
August 28, 2011 — PHOTOS: New Providence Begins to Recover from Irene's Wrath
Some residential streets were still flooded, while others were still suffering from downed power lines, poles, and fallen trees and limbs. Chief Buccelli alerted all residents to boil water from their faucets before consumption. We continued to update the community as more information became available.
August 28, 2011 — Hundreds in New Providence Still Without Power in Irene's Wake
Although the countywide state of emergency had been lifted, a couple hundred homes in New Providence were still without power on August 28. Plus, police confirmed more than 100 basements were still flooded. Chief Parlapiano said fire department would start pumping out basements on August 29.
August 29, 2011 — VIDEO: Irene Brings Flood Damage to New Providence
The day after Irene hit, residents walked around New Providence to see all the damages. In this video, we hear from residents and their experiences during the storm.
August 30, 2011 — Borough Announces Pick-Up Dates for Brush, Damaged Items
The Borough of New Providence issued a Code Red Alert, informing residents of the upcoming regular garbage pick-ups, collections and disposals of items damaged from Hurricane Irene, as well as brush pick-up.
August 31, 2011 — UPDATE: Power Restored in Most Borough Homes, Flooding Remains
Days after Irene, we continued to update residents with conditions around the borough. Less than a reported 100 households were still without power, while some New Providence streets were still flooded. Plus, Chief Buccelli discussed a water main break and actions taken by Office of Emergency Management during Irene.
August 31, 2011 — Video: Businesses Discuss Damages from Hurricane Irene
Days after Irene, Patch spoke with local business owners and workers about any damages sustained from Hurricane Irene. Check out our video to hear from Skin Deep Day Spa, The Presbyterian Church at New Providence, Old Glory Restaurant, and Towne Deli & Liquors.
September 1, 2011 — UPDATE: Some Residents Still Without Power, Flood Waters Recede
We continued to provide power outage and flooding information to residents following Irene. Mayor J. Brooke Hern said the borough was in contact with JCP&L daily. He also discussed the borough's plans to apply for FEMA grant and discussed how funds were appropriated to replace the borough's emergency phone system.
September 2, 2011 — VIDEO: Murray Hill Residents Concerned With Flooding, Power Loss
More than 400 households in Murray Hill, an unincorporated area that lies within portions of Berkeley Heights and New Providence, were still without power on Thursday following Irene. In our video, residents who live in the Murray Hill area of New Providence discuss their experiences with flooding in their homes and living without power.
September 2, 2011 — UPDATE: Most Borough Homes Should Have Power Restored Today
Nearly a week following Irene, we continued to update residents with power outage information and damages still sustained around the borough. Mayor J. Brooke Hern said JCP&L expected most households still without power in New Providence and surrounding areas would have power on Friday and all power should be restored in the borough by Sunday.
September 5, 2011 — UPDATE: JCP&L Restores All Power to New Providence Residents
Hurricane Irene ripped through the area on August 28, causing numerous New Providence residents to lose power for several days. But on Sept. 4, Mayor J. Brooke Hern said JCP&L informed him that all power has been restored to borough households.
September 14, 2011 — Council Supports Utilities Investigation, Approves New Telephone System
Council approved three resolutions related to Hurricane Irene, dealing with the replacement of the borough’s telephone system and repair of an alarm system, an investigation into the conduct of JCP&L, and commending emergency personnel and volunteers for their work during and after the storm.
September 26, 2011 — Update: Transformer Fire at Alcatel-Lucent Injures Two
A transformer fire in the basement of a commercial building on the property of Alcatel-Lucent injured two members of the Alcatel-Lucent fire brigade. Berkeley Heights fire and police departments were notified just before 7 a.m. Monday about a fire at 600 Mountain Ave. The Berkeley Heights fire department sent in a foam truck to get the situation under control.
October 25, 2011 — UPDATE: Police Continue To Investigate $20K Bank Robbery Attempt
The teller reported that a black male entered the back door of the bank, walked up and handed her a note indicating that he was robbing the bank. The lead teller was able to hit the silent alarm and the suspect fled on foot prior to police arrival. No weapon was shown or implied, and no injuries were reported.
October 26, 2011 — Police Nab Suspect in $20K Wells Fargo Bank Robbery Attempt
Odell Taitt, 32, was charged with robbery attempt in New Providence and robbery of PNC Bank in Tewksbury Township just hours later.
October 29 - 30, 2011 — UPDATE: May Be Days Before Power Restore in New Providence
In the wake of the historic October snowstorm, thousands were still without power because numerous power lines and tree limbs were still down through the borough. Deputy Police Chief Scott Torre said it could be days before power was completely restored to residents.
October 31, 2011 — UPDATE: Conditions Remain The Same Around Borough on Halloween Night
Conditions around New Providence remained unchanged on Halloween, just two days following the October snowstorm, with widespread power outages for residents and businesses and numerous roads still blocked by a combination of downed power lines and trees. District schools were closed that day and Trick-or-Treating was rescheduled.
On Tuesday and Wednesday following the October snowstorm, we continued to update residents with the current conditions around the borough, including school closings and JCP&L power outage numbers by town, as well as Code Red Alerts issued by the Borough. Power lines and tree branches continued to block several borough roads, while many residents still remained without power.
November 3 - 7, 2011 — UPDATE: Power Restored To All New Providence Residents
On Thursday and Friday, we continued to update residents with current conditions around the borough, including road closures, progress being made by JCP&L to restore power, the status of Schools opening up, and Code Red Alerts from the Borough. By Monday, JCP&L reported that all residents in New Providence and Murray Hill had their power fully restored.
November 4, 2011 — Primrose Drive Fire Under Investigation
A fire broke out at a house at 31 Primrose Drive around 5:30 p.m.on Nov. 3. The family was not home at that time and no injuries were reported. An investigation was being conducted to determine if fire started before or after the power grid was restored to that section of New Providence.
November 8, 2011 — Referendums Pass, Uncontested Candidates Elected To Council
Unofficial results revealed the Open Space and Liquor Licenses referendums passed by a nearly 2-to-1 margin. Galluccio and Robinson were elected to 3-year terms, while Lesnewich was elected to unexpired term.