Local News

Crews Prepare for Chance of Frozen Repeat

Posted January 18, 2007 11:52 p.m. EST
Updated January 19, 2007 7:19 p.m. EST

Weather remains an issue in the Triangle, with a chance of another wintry mix of precipitation on Sunday.

Both the city of Raleigh and area power companies say they'll be ready if a big storm hits. Two winters ago, a half-inch of snow brought the city to a standstill.

"That's about as (bad) as it can get in city government. The citizens are out there and they can't get to their families. That's the thing you want to avoid at all costs," Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker said.

Since 2005, the city has invested in a solution that helps prevent roads from freezing over if applied before a storm hits. Salt trucks are on standby, ready to roll out when the storm rolls in.

Power companies are also in prep mode.

"We will monitor the weather and as soon as we know there are outages, we will begin to respond as quickly and as fast as we can," said Tanya Evans, a spokesperson for Progress Energy. "We have a comprehensive storm plan, but as we know, winter weather is difficult to predict, but we have a storm team that is closely monitoring this weather system."

Power companies and their customers won't soon forget the massive ice storm in December 2002. Two inches of ice covered the Triangle, and hundreds of thousands of people were without power, some for several days.

"The crews can only move so quick from area to area. Because of the challenging weather, they can only work so fast, and it just takes an awful lot of time," said Paige Sheehan, a communications specialist for Duke Power.

Duke Power officials say they have a team of meteorologists monitoring the storm system through the weekend. "Duke does have crews in place in every part of our service area that can respond at a moments notice," Sheehan said.

Power company officials remind you call them if you lose power and to stay away from any downed power lines. Also prepare for an outage by having plenty of flashlights and batteries.