Written by Kenneth Reece
Saturday, 19 December 2009 15:52
More than 56,000 customers without power in Western North Carolina.
Progress Energy crews are working around the clock to restore power and are now saying that it will be Monday before everyone is back online. As of 5 p.m., more than 56,000 customers remained without service, down from a peak of about 67,000 at 11 a.m, according to a press release from Progress Energy.
Crews have restored power to more than 30,000 customers since the start of the storm, battling conditions that company officials described as the worst they have seen since the winter storm of 1993. Today Progress Energy had nearly 400 personnel mobilized for the storm. By Sunday morning an additional 300 will be in the field. This number includes line & service and tree personnel as well as damage assessors, staging and logistics personnel, and support staff working behind the scenes to assist with power restoration and customer communications.
“We brought in crews from across the Carolinas and beyond to assist with power restoration,” said John Smith, vice president for Progress Energy’s Western Region. “Our crews are battling treacherous, icy roads; cold temperatures and severe damage; but we are working as safely and quickly as we can to restore power. We thank the people of Western North Carolina for their understanding and patience as we work to get the lights back on.”
Progress Energy reported the following figures as of 5 p.m.
Avery - 256
Buncombe - 46,000
Haywood - 8,600
Jackson - 72
Madison - 563
Mitchell - 805
Yancey - 210