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It could have been worse

Published October 30. 2012 05:02PM

Everything happened with "Hurricane Sandy" as predicted: High winds, heavy rain, power outages.

The power outages appear to be the most perplexing situation for the superstorm. Otherwise, in general, the area was spared major damage.

"There's not the damage we could have had," said Palmerton Borough manager Roger Danielson in assessing the borough's situation this morning, following the overnight impact of the storm.

He said of problems in Palmerton, "By and large it's not too bad as a community as a whole."

Danielson said one area of his town was without electricity because of a tree across a power line. This area of town includes an assisted living facility.

The most bizarre story we've gotten from the storm happened in Jim Thorpe.

Geralyn Scarpati of 709 North St. reported a large boat landed in her yard.

She's not sure what time the incident happened, but a tenant in the house next to her called to tell her there was a boat in the yard.

"It was a long boat," she said, adding that she's not sure what type it was. "It took two people to get it out. It was some type of rowing boat."

It turned out the boat was a canoe. Upon further investigation, she discovered the boat belonged to Austin Bott, who lives two doors away.

She said there is some damage to her fence, but the important thing is that nobody got hurt.

"If somebody was there, it would have killed them," she said.

Lentz Trail between Summit Hill and Jim Thorpe was closed for an extended period because of a power line knocked down by a tree.

As of 9:20 a.m. today, PPL reported 406,248 customers out of power in 28 counties.

This included 13,650 outages in Carbon County after 1,237 customers had recently had power restored.

Hardest hit in Carbon were Penn Forest Township with 3,032 customers out; East Penn Township with 1,870 customers out; Kidder Township with 1,763 customers out; Nesquehoning, which had 1,740 with no power; and Mahoning Township with 1,481 customers in the dark.

The TIMES NEWS was affected by the electrical problems and was forced to operate, including print newspapers, with an emergency generator.

One of the busiest fire departments during the height of the storm was Trachsville, which had a working dwelling fire and several reports of downed trees and wires. No other information was available this morning on the dwelling fire.

The Franklin Township Volunteer Fire Company was also dispatched to the Trachsville location.

A dwelling fire also was reported in Lehighton and led to the dispatch of the Lehighton, Franklin Township, and Mahoning Township fire departments.

This fire was discovered to be minor in nature and all units were told to remain at station.

Audrey Wargo, public information officer for the Carbon County Emergency Management Agency, said the county fared pretty well during Hurricane Sandy.

"There was nothing major in the county," she said. "All local emergency responders were handling situations in their areas."

She urged the following advice to Carbon residents until the storm passes and cleanup occurs:

• Stay indoors.

• Take care of what you need to do.

• Do cleanup.

• Report major damages to the proper authorities whether it be insurance companies and/or borough officials.

• Call the Carbon County Emergency Management Agency, but not on the 9-1-1 line.

• Contact local township and borough officials about damages.

• Stay off the road.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation listed the following road closures in Carbon County as of 9:30 this morning:

Carbon County

• Route 209 south between Broadway and Route 903 in Jim Thorpe Borough is closed due to a downed tree in utility wires.

• Seneca Road between Blakeslee Boulevard and Mahoning drives in Mahoning Township is closed due to a downed utility wire.

• Laurel Road between the Environmental Education Center in Summit Hill Borough and Hacklebarney Road in Jim Thorpe Borough is closed due to a downed utility wire;

• Buck Mountain Road between North Stagecoach Road in Lausanne Township and Lehigh Gorge Drive in Lehigh Township is closed due to a downed tree in utility wires.

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