News Release
September 19, 2003


  • Duke Power customer outages peaked at 131,356 during the night. The affected areas are:

System Total  98,245


Alamance County


Durham County


Guilford County


Orange County


Rockingham County


Caswell County


  • Crews worked throughout the night to restore electric service to 33,111 customers whose electric service was interrupted by Hurricane Isabel. Heavy rains and tropical force winds hampered restoration efforts and assessments on Thursday. Weather forecasts today are more favorable for damage evaluation and restoration. Estimated times of restoration will be made available as damage assessments are completed.
  • Duke Power focuses on restoration efforts in the following sequence, many of which occur simultaneously. This sequence enables power restoration to public health and safety facilities and to the greatest number of locations in the shortest length of time:
    • Public safety related situations (e.g., de-energizing live lines);
    • Emergency service facilities (e.g., hospitals, law enforcement, fire departments);
    • Critical infrastructure (e.g., water and sewer facilities);
    • Transmission lines and distribution substations are top restoration priorities because they are the “backbone” of the system and supply power to large numbers of customers over large geographic areas directly from generating plants.
    • Distribution tap lines, which connect the backbone to individual locations (e.g., neighborhood lines);
    • Distribution transformers and individual service lines until all customers are restored.Approximately 1,500 people are working as quickly and safely as possible to return service to customers.Duke Power has not released any crews to assist other utilities at this time.
  • Customers without power are encouraged to check the meter box and service line connecting to the meter attached to their home or business to see if either is damaged. If so, Duke Power recommends customers turn off their main breaker until the damage is repaired. If the meter box is damaged or pulled away from the building, customers need to contact a licensed electrician for repairs.
  • Duke Power customers should call 1-800-769-3766 (POWERON) to report outages. Spanish-speaking customers may call 1-800-943-6914.If your service is provided by another utility, please contact your electric service provider.
  • Routine service throughout the Duke Power system will continue during this storm restoration.
  • To remain safe, customers should stay away from all downed power lines as well as trees, tree limbs or any structure that the lines may be touching.
  • Several guidelines if you are using a generator:
    • Follow all manufacturers’ guidelines for generator hook-up and use.
    • Please watch for crews and turn-off the generator when crews are in your area. Excess electricity created by your generator can feed back onto electric lines, severely injuring a line technician who begins to work on a line, believing it to be de-energized.
    • It is safer to plug appliances or devices directly into the generator. Duke Power does not recommend connection of a generator directly to a breaker panel or fuse box. If your generator has previously been connected to your panel, you MUST turn-off or disconnect your main breaker to ensure the safety of our line technicians working on the line to restore your service.
    • Always make sure your generator exhaust is located outside and properly vented. It can be dangerous to locate a generator in an enclosed space like a garage.

NEXT UPDATE:   11 A.M.Friday, September 19, 2003

Contact: Media Relations
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