News Release
October 26, 2004

DUKE POWER'S AUTOMATED PHONE SYSTEM RECEIVES TOP INDUSTRY HONORS

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Duke Power has been awarded the Customer Service Project of the Year by Electric Light and Power magazine (ELP) and Chartwell Inc. for enhancements the company made to its automated phone answering system. The Project of the Year award recognizes energy companies for excellence in customer service and marketing.

“We are pleased to be recognized by EL&P and Chartwell for our work on this project,” said Angi Clinton, vice president of Duke Power’s residential and small business customers department. “By enhancing our automated phone system, Duke Power has improved our customers' experience by providing more options for efficient and timely service.”

More Options, Efficiency and Timely Service

To help create an automated phone system that customers would find useful and friendly, Duke Power conducted focus groups with customers who provided input into the scripts, available options and sources of customer identification.

“Our customers provided some valuable input that we’ve incorporated throughout our phone system, said Mark Sessler, general manager, Duke Power’s customer contact services. “We designed our system to ensure customers who choose to do business with us using automation experience the same excellent service as customers who choose to speak with our specialists.”

Duke Power has also added a new automated outage reporting system for its customers who speak Spanish. Those customers who need to report a power outage can do so by calling 1-866-4-APAGON, anytime, day or night. Customers can also report power-related emergencies, such as lines down, and receive electric safety/storm preparedness information. A Spanish-language option was also added to Duke Power’s existing automated outage reporting system (1-800-PowerOn) for customers who are unaware of the new number.

Duke Power representatives will accept the Customer Service Project of the Year award at Chartwell’s Energy Marketing and Customer Service Conference and Expo in Phoenix later this month.

Electric Light & Power magazine, published by PennWell Corp., is an authoritative source of business news for the electric utility industry.

Chartwell Inc. is an independent information services company providing best practices research and industry analysis to the utility and energy delivery industry. Chartwell focuses its research on customer service issues, technologies and management practices, and serves most of North America's leading energy delivery organizations with case studies, research reports and conferences.

Duke Power, a business unit of Duke Energy, is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities and provides safe, reliable, competitively priced electricity and value-added products and services to more than 2 million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina. In 2004, Duke Power celebrates 100 years of service. The company operates three nuclear generating stations, eight coal-fired stations, 31 hydroelectric stations and numerous combustion turbine units. Total system generating capability is approximately 19,900 megawatts. More information about Duke Power is available on the Internet at: www.dukepower.com.

Duke Energy is a diversified energy company with a portfolio of natural gas and electric businesses, both regulated and unregulated, and an affiliated real estate company. Duke Energy supplies, delivers and processes energy for customers in North America and selected international markets. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.

Contact: Paige Layne
Phone: 704/594-0369
24-Hour Phone: 704/382-8333
e-mail: pclayne@duke-energy.com