Power is restored at West Virginia Capitol following storm

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Power was restored to the state Capitol Complex by late Wednesday afternoon.

Appalachian Power said its work at the Capitol was wrapped up by late Wednesday afternoon.

Most Capitol buildings had gone dark while power crews worked to fix damage left by Monday evening’s severe storm. Power was initially on at the Capitol, but downed power lines needed to be fixed.

An announcement went out near midday Tuesday that power would go off at the Capitol and that offices would be closed. By Wednesday morning, power had been restored to Buildings 1 and 3, the Governor’s Mansion and the Culture Center.


State offices in the remaining buildings were doing their best to get work done.

“Agencies within the affected buildings are being kept up-to-date on AEP’s progress. At this time, it has been at the agency head’s discretion to direct employees to work from home to the greatest extent possible,” stated Samantha Knapp, communication director for the state Department of Administration, partway through Wednesday.

“Employees have been urged to stay on standby should the power be restored and business operations resume as normal, but at this late hour in the day and the amount of time it would take to cool the buildings, affected offices will likely remain closed through the end of the day.”

A strong storm rolled right over the Capitol on Monday evening while the state Senate was finishing a special session. Reports of a tornado — later confirmed — prompted senators, reporters and members of the public to evacuate the chamber for several minutes.

The lights at the Capitol flickered that night, but the downed power lines prompted the decision to turn off power to Capitol buildings at midday Tuesday.

There was some damage at the Capitol, but state officials said it was not a lot.

“Physical damage to the Capitol campus buildings and grounds was fairly minimal,” Knapp said. “The weather protection on the dome exterior scaffolding suffered a minor tear which was repaired the night of the weather event.

“The vast majority of damage on/near the campus occurred along Washington and Jefferson Streets where approximately 12 of the electrical poles sustained damage, including two major electrical feeds to state buildings, which accounted for most of the power outage to the Capitol campus.”

The Department of Transportation notified media outlets by email today to say its offices at the Capitol continued to be without power.

“Due to continued damage and power outage throughout the WV Capitol Complex, WVDOT’s offices in Building 5 will be closed today,” the agency stated.

“Customers visiting regional DMV offices may also experience limited service at some locations, due to servers being housed in Building 5.”

Additional state agencies used Twitter to inform the public that services had returned or could continue to be disrupted today.

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