By David Cruz
It’s a scene that is repeating itself up and down the state, and, indeed across the tri-state region. Long lines for fuel as residents struggle to get around, trying to put their lives back into normal working order. With mass transit still trying to get back up and running, cars are even more of a necessity for many.
Jersey City resident Joseph Arguelles shared his fruitless search. “We tried Newark; it was like 2 or 3 hour waits. Then they ran out. The Heights ran out last night,” he said. “Bayonne is still pretty much evacuated. Jersey City is still evacuated so nobody has nothing.”
Secaucus resident Maria Fernandez said, “Trying to get into the city and it’s nearly impossible.”
Rutherford resident Valerie Pagan thought getting gas was a priority. “Well I have to go to work and I’m getting gas now because I still have a half a tank and I don’t wanna run out,” she said.
There is good news and bad news on the mass transit front. The good news — NJ Transit says about 80 percent of its bus fleet is back on the roads today, but road conditions and detours will mean long waits and those buses will be more packed than usual. The bad news is that rail service, either on NJ Transit, or the PATH, is down until further notice. In Hoboken, where the National Guard is still pulling people from flooded buildings, the mayor says she has no idea when the trains will run again.
“I’ll be reaching out to New York Waterways to see if there’s additional resources that can be put in place to really look at the fact that, if we don’t have the PATH, how are we gonna help everyone get to work? So we’re also gonna be working on that,” said Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer.
No one can enter Lackawanna Terminal in Hoboken — a major hub for rail, bus and ferry service to New York and all around New Jersey — because officials still have safety concerns. That means that the thousands of people who use this terminal every day will probably be on the road. And that means more gas lines and big traffic jams. How long? Officials say, until further notice.