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Duke Energy restores power to 380,000 Carolinas customers following powerful two-day storm

2020-02-07 18:17 ET - News Release

- 49,000 customers - most in North Carolina - remained without power as of 5:30 p.m. today
- More than 4,600 workers repairing heavily damaged utility poles, power lines

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Feb. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Duke Energy crews have restored power to more than 380,000 of the nearly 461,000 customers impacted by a powerful two-day storm that included tornadoes, heavy winds and record rainfall across the Carolinas.

A total of 49,000 customers – 37,000 in North Carolina and 12,000 in South Carolina – remained without power as of 5:30 p.m. today.

The latest outage numbers can be found here on the company's outage map.

More than 4,600 Duke Energy workers and contractors are making repairs across a wide area of the two-state region.

Due to the severity of damage to Duke Energy's utility poles and power lines – mostly caused by wind-driven downed trees – power restoration work in the hardest-hit areas is expected to continue through the weekend.

Estimated power restoration times are available on the company's outage map as those estimates become available. County-level restoration times represent the latest times customers can expect to have power restored. Zooming in on a specific location will provide specific power restoration information, as available.

Crews are replacing more than 400 damaged utility poles, as well as damaged power lines and transformers throughout the region.

In Kings Mountain, N.C., powerful winds toppled four large power transmission towers –  video link. More than 150 workers today began replacing the heavily damaged steel structures.

North Carolina's hardest-hit counties include Durham, Franklin, Mecklenburg, Orange, and Wake. South Carolina's hardest-hit counties include Anderson and Spartanburg.

"We greatly appreciate our customers' patience as our crews work as quickly as possible to safely restore power," said Jason Hollifield, Duke Energy's incident commander for the Carolinas. "This was an intense and highly destructive storm that coupled strong, fast-moving winds with heavy rainfall."

Both Charlotte and Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C., set all-time February records for most rainfall in a 24-hour period: 3.16 inches in Charlotte and 5.36 inches in Greenville-Spartanburg.

Drivers urged to use caution near repair crews

North Carolina and South Carolina laws require drivers to slow down and move their vehicles over as far as safely possible when approaching and passing roadside utility crews making power line repairs.

The laws also apply when drivers approach and pass roadside ambulances and other emergency responders. Violators could face fines.

Safety reminders, power line dangers

Duke Energy also urges customers to focus on general safety – duke-energy.com/safety-and-preparedness/storm-safety

  • Stay away from fallen or sagging power lines – and also keep children and pets away from power lines.
  • Consider all power lines – as well as trees, limbs or anything in contact with power lines – energized and dangerous.
  • Beware of storm debris that might conceal fallen or sagging power lines.  
  • Report all power line hazards using the following phone numbers: 
    • 800.769.3766 for Duke Energy Carolinas customers.
    • 800.419.6356 for Duke Energy Progress customers. 
  • Click here for a video demonstration and to read more about safety around power lines.

For storm or power restoration updates, follow Duke Energy on Twitter (@DukeEnergy) and Facebook (Duke Energy).

Duke Energy

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) is headquartered in Charlotte, N.C. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, and 3,000 megawatts through its nonregulated Duke Energy Renewables unit.

More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy's illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

Media contact: 800.559.3853

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