10:09: I've spoken with President Obama several times. There'll be an expedited process with FEMA. Most impacted counties: Atlantic, Cape May, Hudson, Essex, Middlesex, Ocean, Monmouth, Union
10:12: Opening six shelters at Rutgers. Want to make sure people have enough food and water. Working with Salvation Army. National Guard deployed.
2.4 million NJ households without power—twice the number of Hurricane Irene. Full restoration may take longer than Irene.
10:15: Avoid travel unless absolutely necessary. Private employers, please excuse your employees from work today unless absolutely necessary.
NJ Transit service is suspended today. Large sections of track were washed out on NJ coastline. Many have debris across tracks. Translation: Don't expect to get anywhere soon.
10:17: Problems with wastewater treatment issues due to power loss. Uh, boil water?
10:19: first look at portions of NJ shore houses in the middle of route 35; pier at seaside park is half washed out; rollercoaster in the ocean; "level of devastation at the jersey shore is unthinkable." "we are no way near" to letting you back onto the barrier islands. "There is nowhere for me to land." There's no power. "It would be completely unsafe for homeowners to go back onto barrier islands."
10:22: "It is beyond anything I thought I'd ever see. Terrible. We need to remain patient." Will talk to president later today.
"We are going to make sure we do everything we can ... to restore conditions to the state to normalcy as soon as we can. But the devastation is unprecedented. So we need to keep that in mind for gauging our expectations for how quickly that will happen."
10:24: taking questions now
1. 3 deaths
2. Not a levee that failed but a berm
3. Urban search and rescue this morning in AC. not huge number of folks. moving them out to higher ground. Some of those people "self-sheltered" because they didn't evacuate soon enough. "I've gone to the Jersey shore my entire life. The idea that you'd see homes in the middle of Route 35 Southbound and Northbound is unfathomable."
"Oyster Creek (nuclear plant) is fine. We've gone through the normal checks."
How does Christie feel? "I'm still sick." He got two hours of sleep last night. Phone calls kept waking him up. One of the calls was from the president. "He's allowed."
SORRY--CURBED PHILLY JUST LOST POWER TEMPORARILY (DURING A LIVE BLOG; SO FABULOUS). WE'RE NOW BACK.
10:37: Can't estimate time of power-outage recovery. "I would just be spitballing and I don't want to do that to people." Saw transformers blowing everywhere.
10:39: Christie thinks what mayor of AC did was "ill-advised." Whether it was illegal? Won't comment on that.
10:40: Given what he's been looking at today, "I will tell you that this administration at the moment could give a damn less about Election Day. ... I don't give a damn about Election Day. I have bigger fish to fry....I'm not going to worry about it." He says he thinks people of NJ would be upset with him if he was concentrating on that instead of search and rescue.