LAKEWOOD – Houses were flooded and motor vehicles were stuck on roads throughout the township as a powerful thunderstorm brought flash floods to northern Ocean County and southern Monmouth County on Friday night, according to local storm reports provided to the National Weather Service.
By Saturday morning, Route 9, which had been closed between James and Pine streets in Lakewood due to high water, had re-opened. The water on Arboretum Parkway there had receded, leaving behind mud, along with a waterline that was about 2-feet high on one SUV parked on the street.
The National Weather Service on Saturday said the slow-moving storm officially left 4.1 inches of rain in Howell and 3.7 inches in Lakewood, drenching the two towns between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. Jackson was hit with more than 2 inches.
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The Ocean County Sheriff’s Office also reported there were wires down and power outages as a result of the storm. Jersey Central Power & Light reported that 2,646 customers (homes or businesses) in Ocean County were without electricity as of 8:25 p.m. Friday — just more than 1% of their service in Ocean.
That number had dwindled to 34 customers by 12:00 p.m. Saturday, according to JCP&L.
A lightning strike briefly disabled the phone system at Jackson Police Headquarters, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
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At 7:15 p.m., Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst measured a 49 mph wind gust in Wrightstown in Burlington County. Elsewhere, a 911 call was placed for a water rescue in Jackson, according to the reports.
The weather service has warned that its wireless emergency alert system (WEA) is down “due to technical issues and thus this flash flood warning will not activate your devices. We’re receiving reports of houses flooded and cars stranded on roadways in Lakewood, NJ! Have multiple ways to receive warnings tonight!”
The forecast for Saturday called for hot and humid temperatures with the heat index approaching 100 degrees with the potential for scattered showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon.
This is a developing story. Check back with app.com for more information.
Staff writer Michael L. Diamond contributed to this story. Contact Asbury Park Press reporter Erik Larsen at [email protected]