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Duke Energy prepares for winter weather, urges customers to prepare Jan. 17, 2013

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -

Duke Energy is preparing for a winter storm expected to bring accumulations of snow and ice to portions of the Carolinas. Crews in western and central North Carolina and South Carolina are preparing vehicles and materials to respond to outages that may occur as a result of the storm. Additional resources from within the Duke Energy system are also available to assist local crews as needed.

Forecasts will continue to evolve as the storm system approaches. Duke Energy is preparing for accumulations of 4-12 inches in higher elevations, with other areas seeing smaller accumulations.

If the power goes out
The fastest way to report an outage is to call our automated outage-reporting system:

Duke Energy Carolinas customers: 800-769-3766 (800-POWERON)
Progress Energy Carolinas customers: 800-419-6356

Customers may also report outages online using their smart phone. Progress Energy Carolinas customers must register their account prior to the storm in order to report outages online or from a mobile device.

During and immediately following larger storms, restoration times may be difficult to predict. Duke Energy encourages customers in affected areas to be prepared if an outage occurs. Customers with special needs who experience an outage should be prepared to seek alternate shelter until service is restored. Icy roadways also make restoration more difficult.

Safety
Duke Energy advises customers to take the following precautions:

  • Stay away from downed power lines. Keep children and pets away as well. Always assume downed lines are energized. Call the outage reporting line immediately if you see a downed line.
  • Do not stand under ice-laden limbs or power lines. Be on the lookout for falling ice.
  • Never use a generator indoors. Always follow manufacturer instructions.
  • Charge mobile phones in advance of the storm.
  • Keep at least one battery-powered flashlight where it can be located easily in the dark. Listen for storm information on a battery-powered radio. Keep an extra supply of fresh batteries.
  • Make sure you are adequately stocked with canned goods and bottled water.
  • Make sure any indoor heaters, such as wood stoves or kerosene heaters, have adequate ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Likewise, make sure the flue of your fireplace is working properly. Never use outdoor grills in the house.
  • Make sure you have adequate fuel on hand for supplementary heating sources, such as a fireplace, wood-burning stove or kerosene heater.

Stay ahead of the storm with information from our storm site
Customers can track outages and see other storm information on our website:

Duke Energy utilities will also use social media channels to keep customers informed should significant outages occur as a result of the storm:

Restoring power
After severe weather, Duke Energy takes specific steps to restore power. Crews first assess damage and determine what crews, equipment and supplies will be needed to make repairs. Because of this, customers may see damage assessors patrolling their neighborhoods before crews arrive to begin work.

Crews prioritize work to ensure the largest number of customers are restored as quickly as possible. Essential services such as hospitals and emergency responders have priority.

Be aware of high water
Significant rainfall has fallen across portions of the western Carolinas, with as much as 10 inches of rain measured since January 10  across the Nantahala region. Duke Energy is managing hydro stations to reduce impacts as much as possible.

We encourage those living along lakes, streams and other low-lying and flood-prone areas to pay special attention to changing weather conditions and take any necessary precautions.

The public should be aware that high-water conditions can create hazardous conditions and adhere to the advice of local emergency management officials before going on area lakes or rivers.

For updates on lake level information, visit www.duke-energy.com/lakes or call
800-829-LAKE (800-829-5253).

About Duke Energy
Duke Energy is the largest electric power holding company in the United States with more than $100 billion in total assets. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 7.1 million electric customers located in six states in the Southeast and  Midwest. Its commercial power and international business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at: www.duke-energy.com

MEDIA CONTACT: 
Jeff Brooks
800-559-3853


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