Duke Energy prepared for colder temperatures; offers tips to stay safe and manage energy usage

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - As temperatures are forecasted to dive below freezing later this week, Duke Energy is prepared to meet its customers’' energy needs across the Carolinas.

System operators are closely monitoring the electric power system and the company has an adequate supply of electricity to meet demand.

The low temperatures will put higher stress on the equipment used to generate and deliver electricity. Isolated equipment problems are possible, which could result in scattered outages.

To be prepared, customers should consider the following tips:

  • Check your supply of flashlights, batteries, bottled water, non-perishable foods, medicines, etc.
  • Ensure a portable, battery-operated radio, TV or NOAA weather radio is on hand.
  • Do not attempt to heat your home with a gas grill or by bringing a generator inside. Only operate such equipment outdoors in well-ventilated areas. Follow manufacturer instructions.
  • Check on family members, friends and neighbors who have special medical needs or who are elderly to ensure they have necessary emergency supplies. Encourage them to determine now what action they would take in the event of an extended power outage.

Customers who experience an outage should call Duke Energy’'s automated outage-reporting systems for their respective utility:

  • Duke Energy Carolinas: 1-800-POWERON (1-800-769-3766)
  • Duke Energy Progress: 1-800-419-6356

Customers may also report an outage or view current outages online at www.duke-energy.com/storms

Customers who lose power should turn off as many appliances and electronics as possible. This will help with restoration efforts as it will reduce the immediate demand on the power lines when power is restored.

Once power is restored, customers should wait a few minutes before turning equipment back on.

Winter Weather Energy Savings Tips

During times of extreme temperatures, customers will use more power, which generally results in a higher bill the following month.

Electric heating and cooling can account for as much as half of an energy bill, so controlling the home'’s thermostat is one of the best ways to manage energy usage and cost.

Customers can save around 10 percent a year on heating and cooling bills by simply turning their thermostat back by 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours a day. Installing a programmable thermostat allows the customer to automatically set specific temperatures at different times of the day.

Additional ways to manage energy demand and reduce costs include:

  • Set ceiling fans in a clockwise direction to push warm air down into rooms.
  • Open drapes and blinds to allow the sun to warm rooms during the day. Close them at night.
  • Change heating-system air filters. Dirty air filters make heating systems work harder, which uses more energy.

Find this and other tips at duke-energy.com. Just click on the “save energy and money” link.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at www.duke-energy.com.