Some degree of progress has been made restoring power to schools in the village, Ridgewood Superintendent Daniel Fishbein said in a message to parents Friday afternoon. In his letter, Fishbein also spoke of how residents can keep abreast of storm updates, when school might start again, as well as expressing concern over citizen unrest at gas station lines and other places.
"I am heartened by today’s news that power has been restored to George Washington Middle School, joining the three schools that never lost power: Hawes, Somerville and Orchard," Fishbein said.
"It is my hope that more schools will come on line over this weekend. But as you can imagine, PSEG is overwhelmed by the devastation from this storm and so I do not know if we will have school starting on Monday, November 5th. I will keep you informed with an update over the weekend."
Ridgewood municipal authorities are working with school personnel to determine an alternate plan for polling locations under the assumption power may not return to all facilities by Tuesday, Fishbein said.
Meanwhile, Somerville school is still designated as a charging/warming center. Mount Carmel Church will serve as a 24-hour center as well. Several other houses of worship are also set up to take in cold residents.
Glen Rock officials told Patch on Friday afternoon that there have been no restorations to public facilities made in Glen Rock. They've made some changes to polling locations.
Fishbein, in his letter, stressed that resident should keep up to date on information by using the village website and signing up for e-notices. The village's OEM page – containing resources for shelters, special needs registry, shelter information and general tips – should also be utilized.
"One resource that is needed at this time is blood," Fishbein added. "The blood supply is low and those in medical need can use our help. If you are in a position to help and can travel, I encourage you to please donate blood at your earliest convenience."
The Community Blood Services center in Paramus is accepting walk-ins.
In the letter, Fishbein also said considerable cleanup progress has been made, thanks to village workers and leadership from officials.
Village services like garbage, recycling and leaf collection have resumed. Branches are expressly not allowed to be placed in the road. Though progress has been considerable, many areas are still "treacherous" with downed wires and trees leaning on wires, Fishbein said.
"Lastly, as I watch the news I am concerned about some deterioration of civility caused by stress and the loss of services after Hurricane Sandy," Fishbein said in closing. "Mediating disputes should not be something the police and emergency services should be dealing with at this point in time. Communities grow stronger by how we treat each other in times of need and distress. It’s important that we continue to do what Ridgewood does best, and that is to watch over each other and help each other. Please be careful, monitor your children and watch over your neighbors."