CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Appalachian Power Company expects to have all but a few isolated cases of line breaks repaired by Monday night following Saturday night’s strong wind storm.
The wind, that had consistent gusts topping 50 mph in southern West Virginia, initially put 65,000 customers in the dark. That number had been reduced to approximately 6,000 by midday Monday. The most left were in Raleigh, Kanawha and Fayette counties, Appalachian Power Company spokesman Phil Moye said.
“It was pretty powerful wind. Unusually powerful and especially when you consider the hour it came and the time of year it came, it was a little surprising to everyone I think. We were able respond to it quickly and get most of the people affected back in,” Moye said.
The high winds caused 17 hill-to-hill transmission lines or sections of lines to break. All were back in service Monday, Moye said. .
“We experienced some problems with those lines with this storm,” Moye said. “We were able to get those back on pretty quickly and when we did we were able to get several thousand customers back on at a time, so that helped us out a lot.”
The wind also took out 15 distribution stations; all but one had been restored by Monday afternoon.
Crews were still working about 250 separate distribution line problems early Monday afternoon. Appalachian Power had about 850 crew members spread across southern West Virginia. The company brought in help from other states, Moye said.
“People from unaffected parts of our service territory including Kingsport (TN) and southern Virginia. So we’re knocking down things pretty quickly,” he said..