Tuesday was a rough day for power restoration efforts in West Virginia as outage numbers continued to climb but power companies are positive progress will be made soon.
Tuesday night Appalachian Power was reporting around 140,000 customers without power, down from their peak number of 150,000 earlier in the day.
Appalachian Power spokesman Phil Moye was confident that Wednesday is going to be a big day for power crews.
“I think once the weather stabilizes, we have the resources in here, we have people here to help get that job done and the roads are starting to get cleared up,” said Moye. “So I think those two things working in combination with one another are going to help us make some progress and significant progress.”
Moye did not have a full restoration date in mind but he said he believes the worst is behind us and he expects their outage numbers to come down considerably within the next couple days.
Kanawha County had the most outages with over 30,000 followed by Fayette County with around 12,000 customers without power.
For Mon Power and Potomac Edison, the companies that are part of First Energy, the outage numbers were less than Appalachian Power’s at around 109,000.
Mon Power and Potomac Edison spokesperson Patty Michel said their progress was dependent on two factors.
“We are looking for this weather to subside. I think that’s going to be a key factor and also excess ability ,” said Michel. “If the roadways are clear that is going to help us to get to where we need to go of course to get the restoration moving forward.”
When the weather begins to calm down, hopefully Wednesday, Michel said that’s when crews will begin working on first the high priority damage locations such as transmission and substation facilities and hospitals and critical care units as well.
For Mon Power and Potomac Edison, Preston County was hit the hardest with over 13,000 customers without power followed by Randolph County with around 10,000 customers in the dark.
“Right now the majority of the Potomac/Mon Power company customers are expected to be restored by early next week,” said Michel.
The more remote locations without power are expected to be restored by the middle of next week.