Wake County

RDU flies on backup power during morning outage

Passengers at Raleigh-Durham International Airport could check in and clear security Monday morning, but they were out of luck for coffee or food as generator power ran only critical systems during a power outage that lasted a few hours.

“Major elements” of Terminals 1 and 2, including Transportation Security Administration checkpoints and airline computers, operated on power from backup generators after the outage was reported shortly after 6:30 a.m., RDU spokeswoman Mindy Hamlin said.

Stores and restaurants in the terminals remained dark, however, until power was restored to Terminal 2 about 8 a.m. and to Terminal 1 about 9 a.m.

The outage did not delay inbound or departing flights, Hamlin said.

The problem was in a Progress Energy substation at the airport, but officials said the cause was not obvious.

Progress crews were tracing the cause, RDU officials said, and airport officials would then try to prevent a recurrence.

Hamlin said the airport has had generator capacity for some time, but a major backup system was installed during the renovation of what is now Terminal 2 and used to be known as Terminal C.