Except in flooded areas, remaining customers should have power restored by Saturday night. However, it could be days or weeks before about 13,000 customers in flooded areas are fully restored since power restoration crews have been unable to access damaged electrical lines and equipment.
“We are entering a new phase in restoring power – one that will be dictated by events out of our control. But we will continue working just as hard,” said Bobby Simpson, who is overseeing Duke Energy’s restoration efforts. “We are in this for the long haul. We have the personnel and equipment, and we will be in these communities until every last customer who can receive power has power.”
Among the most flooded areas: Clinton, Goldsboro, Kinston and Lumberton in North Carolina; and Florence, Hartsville and Marion in South Carolina.
“Our commitment is steadfast for staying engaged with our customers in flooded communities,” he added. “We are working with state and local officials in developing plans to restore service as safety and quickly as possible once waters recede and homes are habitable.”
Although nearly 1.5 million customers were affected, the peak time for outages was Sunday morning Oct. 9 at 680,000 outages.
In terms of outages, Hurricane Matthew is the fifth-worst storm to hit the combined Duke Energy Carolinas/Duke Energy Progress service area — with damage similar in scale and severity to past storms such as Hurricane Floyd in 1999 and Hurricane Hugo in 1989.