Hurricane Florence is expected to significantly impact North and South Carolina with high winds and severe flooding later this week. The governors of both states declared states of emergency in advance of the hurricane.
Duke Energy is closely monitoring the storm and preparing for expected widespread damage and power outages.
Customers who experience an outage during the storm can report it by:
- Visiting duke-energy.com on a desktop computer or mobile device.
- Texting OUT to 57801 (standard text and data charges may apply).
- Calling the automated outage-reporting system at 800.769.3766 for Duke Energy Carolinas customers and 800.419.6356 for Duke Energy Progress customers.
"Hurricane Florence continues to strengthen and poses a significant threat to the Carolinas, possibly surpassing the damage seen from Hurricane Matthew in 2016 because of the potential for inland hurricane-force winds and a substantial amount of rainfall," said Duke Energy senior meteorologist Max Thompson.
In advance of the hurricane, Duke Energy is moving power restoration crews from its Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Florida territories, so they are ready to help the company's Carolinas-based crews restore power as soon as it is safe to do so.
The company also plans to secure additional crews from other energy companies to assist if necessary.
Historical data and company experience indicate that total power restoration from a storm of this magnitude could take multiple days to several weeks depending on the extent of damage and post-storm conditions including ongoing high winds and severe flooding.
"All Duke Energy customers in the Carolinas could see impacts from this storm and should make plans now to prepare their homes and families. We join state officials in asking everyone to take this storm seriously. We also ask our customers for their patience ahead of what will be a lengthy period of power restoration and recovery from this major storm," Thompson said.
The following tips can help you and your family stay safe if the power goes out:
- Stay away from power lines that have fallen or are sagging. Consider all lines energized as well as trees, limbs or anything in contact with lines. If a power line falls across a car that you're in, stay in the car. If you must get out of the car due to a fire or other immediate life-threatening situation, do your best to jump clear of the car and land on both feet. Be sure that no part of your body is touching the car when your feet touch the ground. Click here for a video demonstration and to read more about safety around power lines. Report all power line hazards using the following phone numbers:
- Duke Energy Carolinas customers – 800.769.3766
- Duke Energy Progress customers – 800.419.6356
- People who live along lakes and rivers, and in other low-lying areas or areas prone to flooding, should pay close attention to local emergency management officials, national weather service and media for changing weather conditions and rising lake and river levels. For updated lake level information, go to duke-energy.com/community/lakes or call Duke Energy's Lake Neighbor Information line at 800.829.Lake (5253).
- Customers should stay tuned to local news for the latest advisories from the National Weather Service and National Hurricane Center, as well as state and local emergency management officials.
For a "Hurricane Kit Checklist," and important safety information visit www.ready.gov. In addition, tips on what to do before, during and after a storm can be found at www.duke-energy.com/safety-and-preparedness/storm-safety. A checklist serves as a helpful guide, but it's critical before, during and after a storm to follow the instructions and warnings of emergency management officials in your area.
How we restore power
Duke Energy has a methodical approach to restoration after the storm passes. Before power can be restored, crews first must assess the extent of damage – which can take 24 hours or more depending on wind speeds and flooding – to determine which crews, equipment and supplies will be needed before repairs can begin. Learn more here.
Lead image courtesy of MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC.