As Raleigh recovers from Matthew, power outages could last a week in NC


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — At least 16 people have died in the United States due to Hurricane Matthew, with half those in North Carolina.

Right now one of the main concerns is power outages.

Nearly 440,000 customers still do not have electricity in North Carolina.

The peak time for outages was 8 a.m. Sunday when 680,000 customers were without power simultaneously in North Carolina.

As of 2 p.m. Monday, there were still 435,836 outages across the state, according to North Carolina Emergency Management. Duke Energy is reporting 276,055 outages, Dominion 26,400; Co-Ops 125,859; and ElectriCities 7,522.

There’s going to be a lot of cleanup for days, if not weeks in some places.

On Clark Avenue inside the Raleigh Beltline, there’s a large tree down that’s blocked the road and has taken down some power lines.

This is just one example of what homeowners and power crews are facing statewide.

“What else can you do?  Just wait it out,” said resident Catherine Pettiford.

It is tough to do much else when night falls and your neighborhood doesn’t have power.

Pettiford says it could be days before her Southeast Raleigh neighborhood has power restored.

“Can’t get to your bathroom or anything.  I’ve burned out candles and I’ve got a lamp light burning now,” she said.

Duke Energy has crews across the state working to get the power back on. There’s a staging area in Raleigh for the crews.

“It’s a massive effort and we are certainly working as diligently as we can to assess the damage. Right now, in some places, we haven’t been able to complete a full damage assessment,” said David Fountain, Duke Energy NC President.

“Hurricane Matthew is off the map, but it is still with us and it is still deadly,” said N.C. Governor Pat McCrory.

Governor McCrory outlined the tough times that are ahead following the storm.

Areas still dealing with flooding and eight people confirmed dead in North Carolina and five still missing.

“People that live around here know that when the water gets soggy you just have to watch for the trees. I didn’t expect to have one on the back of my house and two, three in the front,” said Bert Morales, a Raleigh resident.

Bert Morales working to chainsaw through those trees in his Raleigh home near Dixie Trail.

Not far away, a tree hit Xena Ericksen’s Raleigh home, too.

“I thought there was too much hype for nothing about this storm and I didn’t even charge my phone and computer.  I didn’t expect we’d be without power for a while,” said Ericksen.

“Mother Nature taught me a lesson yet again,” Ericksen added.

Duke Energy says for some people it could be a week from today before their power is restored.

Some residents were frustrated about that.

Duke says they are working on it and points out power has been restored to more than 600,000 Duke Energy customers.

There are more than 5,600 Duke Energy workers in the field currently in the Carolinas.

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