CAPE FEAR AREA, NC (WWAY) — The winter storm that blew in over the weekend caused power outages across the Cape Fear area, and companies were able to restore power to hundreds of homes within 24 hours of services going out.
Duke Energy and Brunswick Electric Membership Corporation had crews on the ground across their service areas in New Hanover and Brunswick County on Friday night, prepared to repair any outages caused by the ice and wind brought in by the winter storm.
Both power companies spoke about the number of outages they saw, and which areas seemed to have been impacted the most.
“Fortunately there were very few outages on our system. The most significant occurred last night after midnight, and this outage was in the Southport area and affected approximately 1,150 homes,” said Tim Tippett, BEMC Systems Operations Manager.
“We only got scattered outages around the area up the coast from Wilmington all the way up from New Bern, and here in Wilmington we had maybe a couple thousands of customers out total during that time period, one of them was an outage near downtown that was about a thousand customers, this morning we were able to get that restored,” said Jeff Brooks, Duke Energy spokesperson.
BEMC and Duke Energy both also reported that the number of outages customers experienced were less than the companies estimated would be caused by the winter storm.
“Anything between one-half and three-quarters of an inch could be very damaging. If this had been the case, the numbers of outages could have been in the thousands or the tens of thousands,” said Tippett.
Although power outages seen across the Cape Fear were not as severe as companies anticipated, both companies said they were thankful to restore power to customers quickly, within the 24 hours of the storm passing through.
“Based on our forecast this could and in many ways should have been much worse, but with winter storms it’s very difficult to predict. You can be just a couple miles apart and maybe one degree change in the temperature, and then that will determine whether you see snow or you see ice and how much damage and outages you’re going to see,” said Brooks.
Both Duke Energy and Brunswick Electric Membership Corporation advise customers to report power outages they experience, and to check the outage maps to stay up to date on areas affected.