UPDATE, Aug. 29, 5:45pm: As of 4pm PPL had two crews on scene, with plans to restore power throughout the area this afternoon and evening. Residents whose power is not restored by tonight are advised to call 1-800-DIAL-PPL (1-800-342-5775) to report the outage.
UPDATE, Aug. 29, 2:30pm: Photos just uploaded to this story reveal the full extent of damage to power lines and transformers along Durham Street in Hellertown. The trees were toppled by Hurricane Irene's high winds Sunday, taking utility poles with them.
Patch freelancer and eyewitness to the devastation , who captured the new images, reports that the tall trees came down "in domino-style effect" near the entrance to , which remains closed. "The cave is without power which made the pumps stop so the river came up and flooded the cave pretty bad," Yorgey observed. The cave is expected to remain closed for at least several days, she added. Durham Street in the vicinity of the cave also remains closed to traffic.
Although most of the was localized and well under control by Monday morning, continued to be felt in the form of .
In Hellertown, Police Chief Robert Shupp has issued a statement advising residents of the Mountainview section--east of Rentzheimer Drive to the borough line--to be prepared for an outage lasting two to four days.
According to the statement, that estimated timeframe was provided to the borough by PPL.
"Because of this we are advising residents in this area to leave and stay with friends or family," Shupp said. "If you choose to stay and you find yourself in an emergency situation dial 911."
Shupp also advised residents to exercise caution if using candles to light their homes during the power outage.
Staying with friends or family instead of in the dark, he said, would be "the safest option," due to the risk of fire. All appliances should be turned off if residents do plan to leave their homes, "because when the power is restored a surge can occur, resulting in further power loss or damage," he added.
Members of the Hellertown Police Department will be going from door-to-door in the neighborhood to advise residents of the situation, and their names will be provided to the American Red Cross of the Greater Lehigh Valley if they require extended services, Shupp said.
As of 5am Monday, PPL was reporting a total of 123,000 customers still without power as a result of Hurricane Irene.
In Hellertown, .
Most Lower Saucon customers who lost power during the weekend storm have now had it restored, according to the company's online Outage Center map, which indicated that 317 township customers were still without power as of 11:29am Monday.
In the Borough of Hellertown, 815 customers are still without power, according to the map.
Also, in Lehigh County many customers of the electric provider are still in the dark, including a number of businesses at The Promenade Shops at Saucon Valley.
The Upper Saucon Township lifestyle center has a scrolling message at the top of its website's homepage advising customers to call individual stores to find out if they have power and are open for business.