RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Duke Energy officials are warning that high winds from the expected arctic blast could lead to widespread power outages across the state.

Company officials said Thursday that crews are preparing to respond if power is lost when winds up to 45 mph gust through the area topple trees. The system also is expected to bring bitterly cold temperatures.

The company warns that lingering high winds may result in longer outage times, and is urging people to prepare ahead of time.

It says customer should sign up for outage alerts, and says people who lose power can report it by texting OUT to 57801, by going online or onto the Duke Energy app or by calling 1-800-POWER-ON.

The company calls the possibility of outages during the holidays “particularly worrisome” and says its crews are prepared to work quickly to restore power if it is lost.