Duke Energy reduces power outages to 1,800

From staff reportsMarch 12, 2014 

— Duke Energy crews from the Carolinas, Florida and the Midwest had the number of customers still powerless after last week's storm down to about 1,800 by Wednesday morning.

The bulk of the remaining outages were in Alamance County, with about 900 customers, and Guilford County, with about 800, the company reported on its outage map.

Orange, the hardest-hit county in the Triangle, had only eight customers without power, the map showed.

Duke warned that a new weather system predicted to blow into the state Wednesday could hamper the remaining repairs because it was predicted to have sustained winds of 20 to 25 mph and frequent gusts of 35 to 45 mph.

Company safety rules forbid workers’ going up in truck baskets or climbing poles if the winds get stronger than 30 mph, Duke said.

The National Weather Service warned in a high-wind advisory that more tree limbs could come down Wednesday, or even whole trees because the ground is soggy from recent snow, ice and rain, and roots cannot hold trees upright as well as they usually do.

In a statement Tuesday night, the company’s head of power delivery in the Carolinas, Jeff Corbett, thanked people for their kindness to work crews.

"The outpouring of compassion and kindness our customers have shown our line workers has been tremendous, and they appreciate knowing the community cares," Corbett said.

Duke also urged customers whose meter boxes were damaged in the storm to have electricians repair them as soon as possible.

In cases where the box was pulled away from the building and electricity went out, crews might not be able to reconnect power until the box is inspected, Duke said.


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