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Progress Continues in Duke Energy's Efforts to Restore Power to Ohio and Kentucky Customers Sept. 18, 2008

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CINCINNATI -

Duke Energy distribution line crews made solid progress on Wednesday, restoring power to customers and addressing critical infrastructure needs. As of 8:30 a.m., power had been restored to 489,000 customers, with 211,000 customers remaining without power.

With additional crews arriving from the Carolinas last night, Duke Energy will have approximately 1,680 field personnel working around the clock in the region. Power has been restored to approximately 70 percent of affected customers. 

“Through this point, we have been able to complete repairs that have allowed us to return power to larger numbers of customers,” said Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky President Sandra Meyer. “We will continue to make good progress, with crews going neighborhood to neighborhood and house to house to restore power. Our goal to restore power to all customers by the end of the weekend remains unchanged.”

Outages peaked at 700,000 Sunday when damaging winds rolled through the greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area. This was the largest outage in Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky’s history. 

“Our crews are working hard to restore power under some very difficult conditions as a result of tree damage, broken poles and downed lines. We greatly appreciate the patience and understanding of our customers,” Meyer said. 

Safety remains critically important during restoration efforts. Customers are encouraged to follow these guidelines:

  • Take care when moving around fallen trees and debris and avoid downed power lines.
  • Home meter boxes and weather heads, the point where the service line is attached to the house, should be checked for damage. If the meter box is damaged or the weather head has pulled away from the structure, a licensed electrician should be called to make repairs so that Duke Energy crews can provide service. For additional information: http://www.duke-energy.com/ohio/outages/meter-damage.asp
  • Portable electric generators should be used with caution and ventilated appropriately. Duke Energy recommends that appliances be plugged directly into the generator. A licensed electrician should be used if the customer is considering wiring the generator to their house.
  • Customers using generators are asked to watch for crews working in their neighborhood and to shut down their generators to prevent the backflow of electricity to power lines, which could seriously injure Duke Energy workers.  

Customers who have special medical needs or who have family members with special medical needs should make appropriate arrangements until their power is restored. Special needs customers can call the following numbers:  

  • United Way of Greater Cincinnati at  2-1-1 for crisis and social services assistance
  • Cincinnati Area Senior Services at 513-721-4330
  • Council on Aging at 513-721-1025
  • Cincinnati Area Chapter of the American Red Cross at 513-579-3000
  • The Hamilton County Hotline at 513-263-8200

Duke Energy, The Kroger Co. and the Cincinnati Area Chapter of the American Red Cross are working to assist individuals and families. The Cincinnati Area Red Cross has set up shelters and water distribution centers. Information on what is available can be found at:  http://www.cincinnatiredcross.org

Duke Energy and the City of Cincinnati are also partnering to have ice distributed by the City of Cincinnati Fire Department. Ice distribution locations can be found at http://www.cincinnati-oh.gov/mayor/downloads/mayor_pdf34323.pdf.

Duke Energy, one of the largest electric power companies in the United States, supplies and delivers electricity to approximately 4 million U.S. customers in its regulated jurisdictions. The company has approximately 35,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity in the Midwest and the Carolinas, and natural gas distribution services in Ohio and Kentucky. In addition, Duke Energy has more than 4,000 megawatts of electric generation in Latin America, and is a joint-venture partner in a U.S. real estate company.

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.


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