Duke Energy: Some power outages could extend into next week
Posted March 8
Charlotte, N.C. — Some Duke Energy customers in the Triangle who lost power during the latest round of winter weather could be without it until as late as Tuesday, company officials said Saturday afternoon.
As of 5 p.m., more than 150,000 Duke Energy customers were still without power, most of them clustered in Alamance, Randolph and Guilford counties. North Carolina's energy cooperatives reported almost 32,000 outages and EnergyUnited reported about 17,000 of its customers didn't have electricity.
Customers in Durham, Orange and Granville counties should have service by the end of the day Sunday, Duke Energy officials estimated, but some in Chatham County could see outages linger through the day Tuesday.
Some customers in Randolph and Alamance counties may not have service until Wednesday night, according to Duke's estimates.
"This storm has caused extensive damage, and we appreciate our customers' continued patience," Jeff Corbett, senior vice president of Duke Energy's Carolinas Delivery Operations, said in a statement. "Our crews are working as quickly and safely as possible to get the lights on for customers and will not stop until the last customer is restored. Improved weather conditions Saturday will help."
Latonia Carer, of Efland in Orange County, said she was forced to leave her home Friday night because of the cold temperatures. She lost her power early Friday as the storm was pushing through the region.
"It was very cold. We had coats on and everything, and we couldn't take it," she said. "We had to leave."
On Saturday, she began throwing out food Saturday after losing her power on Friday.
"I'm going to have to throw it away because it's starting to smell," she said.
David King, who also lives in Orange County, said he's also trying to remain patient while crews work to restore power.
"I'm just waiting to get power back as quick as possible, you know," he said. "Running the generators and finding gas pumps that are working, it's been a mess. The wife and the girls, they're ready for a shower."
Gov. Pat McCrory declared a state of emergency Friday following the storm, allowing a faster response for those in need. He said more than 460,000 outages total were reported across the state.
“While we have become very experienced in winter storm response during the past two months, each storm is different and can require different resources,” he said in a statement. “Today, we’re seeing more power outages than we had during any of the previous storms this year, and we need to do all that we can as quickly as we can to help those in need.”
More than 4,300 Duke Energy employees were working in the central part of the state to restore service.
Officials reminded residents to stay clear of lines that have fallen or are sagging under tree limbs brought down by Friday's ice and wind.
Customers who experience an outage should call Duke Energy's automated reporting systems for their respective utility:
- Duke Energy Carolinas: 1-800-POWERON (1-800-769-3766)
- Duke Energy Progress: 1-800-419-6356
- Spanish-speaking customers can call: 1-866-4APAGON
- Report a power outage: Duke Energy Progress