Cooperative crews have had to cut their way through fallen trees and debris to begin work in the hardest-hit parts of the state. In Carteret County, one traveler reported a “spider web” of fallen poles and power lines along a highway and roads blocked by piles of seaweed and marsh grass.
August 30, 2011, 8:00 a.m. – North Carolina’s electric co-ops have made significant progress in power restoration, reconnecting 141,000 households since Hurricane Irene knocked out power to 152,000 members in eastern North Carolina. Piedmont Electric has sent four repair crews, totaling seventeen men and equipment to Pitt & Greene EMC in Farmville, NC. The team left early Sunday morning to assist with storm restoration resulting from Hurricane Irene.
About 10,000 members have yet to be reconnected, mostly due a lack of access in some of the more remote service territory areas served by electric cooperatives.
If you see utility vehicles stopped on the side of the road, slow down and move to the far lane, if possible. This not only keeps utility workers safe, but it’s also the law. Always regard power lines as energized and extremely dangerous, even if they are lying on the ground or submerged in water. Do not attempt to cut trees near power lines.
North Carolina’s electric cooperatives serve more than 2.5 million people in 93 of the state’s 100 counties, primarily in rural parts of the state.