Power is expected to be restored to the southern Outer Banks Friday or Saturday, Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative officials said Thursday morning.
The company said crews had worked late Wednesday night to connect new overhead cables to the power grid. The work is expected to be complete this morning and the cooperative will begin to energize the new line. The overhead cables are a substitute for underground transmission lines that were accidentally severed a week ago by a construction company building the new Bonner Bridge over Oregon Inlet, cutting off power to Ocracoke Island and everything on Hatteras Island south of the bridge.
Visitors were forced to evacuate both islands and residents have relied on generators since.
The line will stay energized for several hours while workers test the cables. After that, the cooperative will begin gradually to introduce electrical load to the line. Residents on Hatteras Island in the villages of Rodanthe, Waves, Salvo, Avon and Buxton will experience outages while workers transfer those circuits from generator power to the repaired transmission line. The cooperative will try to notify the villages before the outages.
“The restoration time frame from this point forward is 1-2 days,” the company said on its Facebook page.