Power companies continue to work to restore power

Published 2:05 pm Wednesday, January 10, 2024

After yesterday’s severe thunderstorm, regional power companies are working hard to restore power. 

Dominion Energy, Community Electric Cooperative, and Franklin Power and Light each shared details on the number of outages that the Tuesday, Jan. 9 storm accumulated and the work to get everyone’s electricity up and running.

Dominion Energy Senior Communications Specialist, Media Relations Cherise M. Newsome detailed that as of 11:35 a.m., Suffolk had 1,200 customers without power. 

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Served by Dominion Energy’s local office in the Chuckatuck borough, which also serves parts of Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Isle of Wight, and Western Tidewater, Newsome detailed that “about 18,000” customers in Chuckatuck have lost power during the storm’s start. 

“Crews are still working and won’t stop until everyone’s power is restored,” said Newsome. 

She also says that Dominion Energy is asking the community to “stay on alert” because winds still blow tree limbs onto power lines, causing outages to fluctuate.

“We ask that residents stay away from storm debris because it can have power lines entangled in it,” Newsome said. “We anticipate having everyone’s power restored by 11 p.m. tonight.”

Community Electric Cooperative Manager of Communications Jessica Parr said as of  12:20 p.m., the company had 366 outages in the Suffolk area. Parr said the outages began at “around 7:15 p.m. and peaked at “about 3,050” across their system.

“With safety being our top priority, we made the very difficult decision to [halt] non-emergency work due to sustained winds and gusts being unsafe for our linemen to work,” Parr said. “We pulled crews from about 7:30 pm on Jan 9th until 5:30 am on Jan. 10 until conditions were safe. This also allowed us to come out today, Jan. 10, with all hands on deck to restore power to our members. Our goal is to have all members restored today by 8:00 pm.”

Parr also noted that CEC had a small crew working overnight directly with emergency personnel to ensure the safety of their first responders during emergencies. 

“We are incredibly thankful for our supportive members and especially our hard working team,” Parr said. “They have done a spectacular job clearing downed trees, fixing broken poles, and cleaning up downed wire. We are also thankful for the partnerships and ability to work closely with Dominion, local first responders, and our statewide Virginia, Maryland and Delaware Association of Electric Cooperatives (VMDAEC) to ensure supplies and crews are available to restore power to our community.”

Likewise, Franklin Power and Light Director Zachary Wright also gave details on outages within the Franklin, Southampton and Suffolk areas, with Suffolk seeing 44 on their end. In a statement, Wright says that outages occurred Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. 

“Franklin Power and Light experienced multiple power outages last night during the storm and have experienced some this morning,” Wright said. “Franklin Power and Light crews worked through the night restoring power and were back out this morning having power restored around 9 a.m. in the affected areas.”

For more information, visit dominionenergy.com, comelec.coop, or franklinva.com/government/departments/electric.