News Release
Dec. 02, 1999


CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Duke Power’s Dan River Steam Station in Rockingham County celebrates a major milestone Dec. 3 — the plant turns 50.

When Duke Power began constructing the plant in 1948, it was part of the extensive building program during the post-World War II era. The South was enjoying a period of strong industrial and commercial growth, and the demand for electricity was skyrocketing.

Between 1946 and 1948, Duke Power’s electricity production soared to meet increasing demand. Its generation output at that period exceeded the total output of the company during its first 20 years in business.

"The first two units cost $15 million and were equipped with the latest technology available at that time," said Marc Susinno, station manager. "Dan River was built at the northern end of Duke Power’s system, so the company could better distribute the convenience and comfort of electricity to a wider area of Piedmont communities. At that time, it used the largest boilers on our system."

A third unit was added to the station six years after it began operating. Recent modifications include new coal unloading equipment that allows the plant to more quickly unload larger coal shipments. The plant can now receive unit trains of coal consisting of 100 coal-cars each, and each of these trains can be unloaded in just four hours.

"Our original investment in Dan River has certainly paid off," Susinno says. "Today the plant’s output continues to play a key role in Duke Power’s ability to meet customers’ demands for electricity. So far this year, the Dan River station has generated nearly 800 million kilowatt-hours of electricity."

Duke Power, a business unit of Duke Energy, is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities and provides safe, reliable, competitively priced electricity to nearly two million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina. Duke Power operates three nuclear generating stations, eight coal-fired stations, 31 hydroelectric stations and numerous combustion turbine units. Total system capability is 19,252 megawatts.

Duke Energy (NYSE-DUK) is a global energy company with more than $29 billion in assets. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., the company reaches into more than 50 countries, producing energy, transporting energy, marketing energy and providing energy services. In the United States, Duke Energy companies provide electric service in North Carolina and South Carolina; operate interstate pipelines that deliver natural gas to various regions of the country; and are leading marketers of electricity, natural gas and natural gas liquids. Additional information about the company is available on the Internet at:

Contact: Guynn Savage
Phone: (704) 382-8350
24 Hour Phone: (704) 382-8333