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JCP&L Hopes To Improve Service With New Technology

JCP&L Project Manager John Shannon shows off the new laptops for their trucks - Freehold, NJ - Aug 21, 2012 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

JCP&L Project Manager John Shannon shows off the new laptops for their trucks – Freehold, NJ – Aug 21, 2012 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

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FREEHOLD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) - Jersey Central Power & Light is hoping to serve you better by embracing the 21st Century.

WCBS 880’s Jim Smith On The Story

“This is what the guys would work off of before, if they happen to have one,” JCP&L Project Manager John Shannon told WCBS 880 reporter Jim Smith as he unfolded an old-fashioned paper map showing the company’s circuits and infrastructure.

Now, that data now is going high tech with mobile laptops being installed into over 400 repair trucks.

JCP&L Repair Truck - Freehold, NJ - Aug 21, 2012 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

JCP&L Repair Truck – Freehold, NJ – Aug 21, 2012 (credit: Jim Smith / WCBS 880)

“Highlight the circuit so they can see it all the back to the substation, see where it is fed from,” he said.

The computer’s also contain GPS, allowing dispatchers to put the closest truck on the job with turn-by-turn directions to help navigate traffic.

Shannon said the $5 million upgrade means faster restoration for when your lights go out.

“It’s changing the way we do business. It’s gonna be more efficient. We’ll be able to respond quicker,” he said.

All of this digital information will also be available to out-of-state crews when they’re called in to help after a major storm.

“They’ll be able to log on. They’ll be able to see our maps,” he said.

A company spokesman said this is an investment without a rate hike.