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Duke Power Prepared To Respond To Hurricane Isabel

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Duke Power personnel are prepared to respond to potentially severe weather related to Hurricane Isabel that is threatening the Carolinas' coastline.

"We continue to carefully monitor this weather system and are ready to respond should outages occur," said Theopolis Holeman, Duke Power's executive vice president, power delivery. "We have contacted state and local emergency management officials, inventoried supplies, prepared our employees and evaluated contract and outside utility crew availability."

Holeman emphasized that high winds can result in downed power lines, and that customers should stay away from all lines as well as trees, tree limbs or any structure that the lines may be touching.

"This type of storm can also bring heavy rainfall," Holeman continued. "To prepare for this potential, we have lowered our lake levels as appropriate throughout the area."

When outages occur, Duke Power focuses restoration efforts in the following sequence, many of which occur simultaneously:

  • Public safety-related situations, such as de-energizing live lines,
  • Emergency service facilities, including hospitals and fire departments,
  • Critical infrastructure -- water and sewer facilities,
  • Distribution feeder lines, often referred to as the "backbone" of the system,
  • Neighborhood lines that connect the backbone to individual locations,
  • Transformers and individual service lines.
  • This sequence enables power restoration to public health and safety facilities and to the greatest number of locations in the shortest length of time.

    Duke Power officials offer tips for preparing for any outage situation:

  • Make sure that flashlights, candles and matches, or other sources of light are readily available.
  • Ensure that flashlight and radio batteries are fresh.
  • Ensure that if you are a Duke Power Medical Alert customer or a customer with special needs, that you have identified an alternate location should an extended outage occur.
  • Homeowners with wells should draw an emergency water supply in case electric water pumps are affected.
  • Keep a supply of bottled water and non-perishable food items on hand.
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