Irene powered through Essex County in the early morning hours Sunday, leaving fallen trees and flooded streets in its wake. County officials are saying Sunday a long clean-up effort could be on the horizon.
"We need it to stop raining. We need people to stay in their houses," said Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr.
DiVincenzo told Patch this morning that power at the command center and shelter at Codey Arena in West Orange -- which had been used as an emergency shelter for stranted county residents -- briefly lost power this morning, but was quickly brought back online by generators.
DiVincenzo says a number of trees have fallen, and a number of county roads are flooding, causing headaches for county workers struggling to keep roads clear.
County roads have been closed down in Belleville, Roseland, Newark and West Orange, and parts of South Orange Avenue and JFK Parkway in Livingston and Millburn. DiVincenzo says the towns that were the hardest hit include Belleville, Newark and Fairfield. In Belleville, some residents
Millburn, which was hit with severe flooding,
In Northfield Avenue was temporarily closed when heavy rains flooded it in the middle of the night. is reporting scores of fallen trees and flooding. also has heavy damage.
DiVincenzo said the clean-up efforts will be extensive, and warned that people living near the "are going to suffer more."
"This is going to go on for a while. There's a lot of clean-up that is doing to be done."
Striking an optimistic chord, DiVincenzo says he hopes the worst is over.
"They're saying it should be over by 10 or 11 o'clock. By the afternoon, the sun should come out."