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State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
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news releases

August 31, 2011

Contact: Lawrence Ragonese (609) 292-2994
Lawrence Hajna (609) 984-1795


(11/P106) TRENTON - Rivers and streams across New Jersey that were inundated by rains and subsequent runoff caused by Hurricane Irene have now dropped below peak flood levels, though it will another few days before all rivers are completely below flood stage and flood waters totally recede.

In particular, the Passaic River at Little Falls and Pine Brook will remain above "major'' flood stage until Friday morning. Flooding remains an issue today in much of the Passaic River Basin, including Fairfield, Lincoln Park, Little Falls, Paterson, Pequannock, Pine Brook, Pompton Lakes, Wayne and further downstream in Wallington.

The Rockaway River at Boonton, below the Jersey City Reservoir, should go below flood stage this evening. The Passaic River at Chatham will go under flood stage Friday morning. The North Branch Rancocas River at Pemberton and the Great Egg Harbor River are expected to go below flood stage by tomorrow.

"Thankfully, conditions across the State are improving and we hope to see an end to all flooding soon,'' said DEP Commissioner Bob Martin. "But we fully understand there are many people still impacted by flood waters and the Christie Administration will work hard to help those residents recover from the effects of this terrible storm.''

The Department of Environmental Protection continues to carefully monitoring this situation and is working closely with Offices of Emergency Management in all 21 counties to assist residents in flooded areas. Concerned residents are urged to check the web sites of their County and Local Offices of Emergency Management for current information.

For a detailed look at river conditions across New Jersey, please visit:

The DEP also is continuing to monitor dams statewide. More than 160 dams across the State have been inspected by the Department's Office of Dam Safety or dam owners and their engineers. So far, there have been just four dam failures, all occurring at lesser hazard dams, none of which have caused harm to residents living in downstream communities. Thirty-seven other dams suffered some damage, but were not breached. It is expected that additional damage to dams may be discovered once flood waters recede.

Teams of DEP engineers are continuing their statewide inspections of dams, with engineering teams working today in Burlington, Gloucester, Salem, Middlesex and Essex counties.
Meanwhile residents in 14 towns, mostly in North Jersey, are still under boil water orders for their potable water supplies, as work continues to get those water systems fully operational. Included are customers of the following water systems:

  • Hightstown Water Department in Mercer County;
  • New Jersey American Short Hills Water System in West Orange, Short Hills, Millburn, Maplewood, Irvington, Summit, Springfield, and Florham Park;
  • Livingston Water Department in Essex County;
  • Forest Lakes Water Company in Andover Township and Byram, Sussex County;
  • Sussex Water Department in Sussex Borough, Sussex County;
  • United Water-Vernon Valley in part of Vernon Township, Sussex County;
  • United Water-Woodridge Estates, also in Vernon Township.

The DEP is urging any New Jersey residents who are unsure of their water supply - from either a municipal water system or personal well -- to either use bottled water or boil your potable water before use.

For more information on water safety visit the following sites: or



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Last Updated: August 31, 2011