September 6, 2008
Progress Energy Crews Continue Quick Restoration of Service After Hanna
To: ENERGY EDITORS
Contact: Corporate Communications 24-Hour Media Line, 1-877-641- NEWS (6397)RALEIGH, N.C., Sept. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Fewer than 10,000 Progress Energy customers remain without electricity in the wake of Tropical Storm Hanna, and an army of company and contract crews is focusing on those still without power.
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As of 4 p.m., an estimated 9,300 customers were without power. Most remaining outages are in coastal areas and the coastal plain, though scattered outages also remain as far west as the Triangle and Sandhills. All South Carolina customers have been restored.
"Our storm plan is working well and the crews in the field are doing an excellent job of safely and quickly restoring power," said Hershell McCarty, Progress Energy Carolinas' system storm coordinator. "We know any outage is unwelcome for our customers and we appreciate their patience as we get the lights back on."
North Carolina counties with the largest numbers of power outages at 4 p.m. are New Hanover (1,900); Wayne (1,200); Craven (1,150); Columbus (800); Robeson (700); and Duplin (600). Outages are scattered elsewhere.
Progress Energy expects to restore service to most customers by midnight tonight, with restoration in particularly hard-hit areas expected to be completed by Sunday at midnight.
The rolling nature of the storm meant that new outages were being reported this morning even as crews in other areas were restoring service. Between midnight and 4 p.m. today, company and contract crews had restored service to more than 178,000 customers. The largest number of customers without power at any one time was approximately 55,000 at 8 a.m. today.
Tropical Storm Hanna came ashore at 3:20 a.m., bringing high winds and heavy rains to much of Progress Energy Carolinas' service area. Progress Energy has supplemented the normal complement of 300 line & service and tree crews in Eastern North Carolina with more than 150 additional line and tree personnel and scores of additional damage assessors and support staff. Additional crews are scheduled to move east, if needed, once outages in the Triangle and Sandhills are cleared.
Progress Energy works to minimize storm impacts year-round through preventive maintenance, including trimming of trees around the company's 6,000 miles of transmission lines and 60,000 miles of electric distribution lines. Wind-blown trees and limbs are the leading cause of power outages during storms.
Customers and media can find outage information on Progress Energy's Web site at www.progress-energy.com/outagemap. During major events such as storms, the map will be updated several times a day.
The quickest way to report an outage during a storm is to call the automated outage-reporting system at 1-800-419-6356. For the latest information, visit Progress Energy's storm site online at www.progress-energy.com/storm.
Progress Energy, headquartered in Raleigh, N.C., is a Fortune 250 energy company with more than 21,000 megawatts of generation capacity and $9 billion in annual revenues. The company will observe a century of operation in 2008. Progress Energy includes two major utilities that serve 3.1 million customers in the Carolinas and Florida. Progress Energy is the 2006 recipient of the Edison Electric Institute's Edison Award, the industry's highest honor, in recognition of its operational excellence. The company also is the first utility to receive the prestigious J.D. Power and Associates Founder's Award for customer service. Progress Energy serves two fast-growing areas of the country, and the company is pursuing a balanced approach to meeting the future energy needs of the region. That balance includes increased energy efficiency programs, investments in renewable energy technologies and a state-of-the-art electricity system. For more information about Progress Energy, visit the company's Web site at www.progress-energy.com.
SOURCE Progress Energy
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