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Duke Energy Offers Customers Cold Weather Information January 2, 2008

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Winter in the Carolinas brings colder temperatures, higher energy use and the possibility of severe weather.

Duke Energy offers the following information to assist customers with safety, severe weather preparedness and managing energy use and electric bills.

Understanding Your Electric Bill
Duke Energy customers with billing questions are encouraged to visit to view their electric account. Accessing an account through the Web site requires a one-time registration. Once logged in, customers can view a number of items, including their billing history for the past 13 months and comparative weather information for the same billing period last year. This information can be useful in seeing how extreme temperature differences can impact electricity usage.

Energy Audit Helps Identify Ways to Save
Also on is an online home energy audit that can be a valuable tool for any consumer interested in saving a few dollars. Customers enter specific information about their home and receive a comprehensive report on energy efficiency and suggestions on how to improve it. The audit even details the typical annual cost of operating certain appliances like an electric heating system, television and washing machine.

Managing Your Energy Costs
Duke Energy offers a variety of programs to help customers manage their monthly energy costs, including an Equal Payment Plan (EPP). With EPP, customers can pay an average amount each month for 11 months and settle up in the 12th month. This program helps remove the seasonal peaks and valleys in energy costs. For more information, visit, select the state of residence and view the available billing and payment options, or contact Duke Energy by its 24-hour customer service center at 1-800/777-9898.

Storm-Related Power Outages
Along with colder temperatures, the winter months can bring ice, snow and severe weather conditions. When severe weather strikes, power outages can occur.
Duke Energy encourages customers to be prepared and offers the following tips to help lessen the inconvenience of power outages.

When Severe Weather Is Expected

  • Ensure you have an adequate stock of storm supplies, including flashlights, batteries, medicines, first aid supplies, baby items, bottled water, non-perishable food and firewood. 
  • Homeowners with wells should draw an emergency water supply in case power to their electric water pumps is interrupted.
  • If you have an emergency heating source, learn how to use it properly to prevent fire and ensure proper ventilation.

During an Outage

  • To quickly report your power outage, call Duke Energy's toll-free, automated outage reporting line 800/POWERON (800/769-3766); Spanish-speaking customers can call 866/4-APAGON (866/427-2466). You can also report your power outage and view current outages online at
  • Consider moving yourself and your family -- especially those with special needs  -- to an alternate location during an extended outage.
  • Keep freezers and refrigerators closed as much as possible.
  • Do not bring grills inside to heat or cook. Outdoor appliances can produce dangerous amounts of carbon monoxide without proper ventilation.
  • Listen to local radio stations for updates from Duke Energy about affected areas and restoration activities.
  • During severe weather or power outages, turn off as many appliances and electronics as possible. This will reduce the potential for damage or fire. After the power is restored, wait 5 to 10 minutes before turning them back on.

For Your Safety

  • Stay away from all downed or sagging power lines.
  • Consider all power lines energized.
  • Do not touch anything on or near a power line (e.g., trees or tree limbs, cars, ladders, etc.).
  • Keep children and family pets away from areas where lines may have fallen (backyards, fields, schools yards, etc.).
  • Report all hazardous situations involving power lines to Duke Energy and your local emergency services agency.

For more information, visit, or contact Duke Energy by calling its 24-hour customer service at 1-800/777-9898.

Duke Energy's Carolinas’ operations include nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides nearly 21,000 megawatts of safe, reliable and competitively priced electricity to more than 2.3 million electric customers in a 24,000-square-mile service area of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Duke Energy, one of the largest electric power companies in the United States, supplies and delivers energy to approximately 4 million U.S. customers. The company has approximately 36,000 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:

Contact: Corporate Communications
24-Hour Phone: 704/382-8333

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