New Jersey Transit spokesman John Durso, Jr. has no estimate for when rail service along the Morris and Essex line will resume.
"The damage wrought on the M&E was amongst the worst suffered by any NJ Transit rail line in the state," Durso said in an email to Chatham Patch. "There are no estimates ... [for when] the M&E can safely resume service."
To help residents commute to Manhattan, New Jersey Transit has established three methods of transportation free of charge starting Friday. Inbound service runs from 6 to 10 a.m., and outbound service runs from 4 to 8 p.m. Service includes:
- Free shuttle service between Morristown Station and Weehawken Ferry Terminal, with free ferry service between Weehawken and Pier 79 at West 39th Street.
- Free shuttle service between Convent, Madison and Chatham stations and Liberty State Park, with free ferry service between Liberty State Park and Battery Park.
- Free shuttle service between Maplewood Station and Liberty State Park, with free ferry service between Liberty State Park and Battery Park.
There are also buses available from the Madison and Chatham train stations for $20 round-trip.
Durso said crews are working to restore service along the Morris and Essex line. Damage along the line includes tree damage between Denville and Morristown stations and Summit and Millburn stations, and overhead wire damage throughout the line, including signal wires and catenary polls down.
"Most critically," Durso said, there was "extensive flooding in the vicinity of Kearny Junction [which] resulted in the washout of rail ballasts under the tracks," which affects service into Hoboken and New York via the Midtown Direct service.