Duke Energy teams prepare to respond to effects of Hurricane Ian

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  • Company lowering lake levels ahead of storm’s expected arrival in the Carolinas.

  • Customers in the Carolinas should prepare for outages.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – As Hurricane Ian passes out of Florida today and follows an expected northward trek, Duke Energy is readying its crews to respond to potential power outages across the Carolinas. The storm is expected to bring with it strong winds and heavy rains that could lead to localized flooding. On Wednesday, states of emergency were declared by the governors of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Duke Energy has 5,200 local responders organized into travel teams – including line technicians, vegetation specialists and damage assessors – who are highly familiar with existing company systems and infrastructure in the Carolinas. They will be staged across all Duke Energy service areas throughout the Carolinas, ready to respond as soon as it is safe to do so.

Duke Energy prepares for storms throughout the year and is able to draw on other resources from peer utilities and across the region.

High water and flooding are possible on Duke Energy Lakes

Duke Energy has been lowering lake levels by moving water through its river systems, creating more storage for rainfall and runoff.

Based on the current forecast, spilling is possible. People living along lakes and rivers or in flood-prone areas, including those along the Catawba-Wateree basin, should closely monitor lake levels and follow instructions from local emergency officials. 

Real-time lake level information is available at www.duke-energy.com/community/lakes, by calling 800.829.5253 or on the Duke Energy Lake View mobile app. 

High-water and flooding safety reminders

  • Learn about your county's emergency plans, warning signals, evacuation routes and locations of emergency shelters.
  • Turn off your power at the circuit breaker panel or fuse box if rising water threatens your home or if you evacuate your home.
  • Stay away from downed power lines and electrical wires. Do not drive over or stand near downed power lines. Electric current passes easily through water.
  • Avoid driving through flooded areas; most flood-related deaths occur in automobiles.
  • Pay close attention to local emergency management officials, national weather service and media for changing weather conditions and rising water levels.
  • If you have electrical service to facilities (piers, outside lighting on seawalls, etc.) on or near the water, have a qualified electrical contractor de-energize this service to avoid injuries and equipment damage.
  • Never replace a fuse or touch a circuit breaker with wet hands, or while standing on a wet or damp surface.
  • If your home or business is flooded, Duke Energy cannot reconnect power until the electrical system has been inspected by a licensed electrician. If there is damage, an electrician will need to make necessary repairs and obtain verification from your local building inspection authority before power can be restored.

Carolinas customers should prepare for outages

While residents of coastal areas are often most at risk of being affected by hurricanes, the current track of Ian is expected to bring damaging high winds and rain inland. Before the storm hits, customers should text REG to 57801 to ensure they are registered to receive text updates about outages that may impact them.   

Customers who experience an outage during a storm can report it the following ways:

  • Text OUT to 57801 (standard text and data charges may apply).
  • Visit duke-energy.com on a desktop computer or mobile device.
  • Use the Duke Energy mobile app – Download the Duke Energy App from a smartphone via Apple Store or Google Play.
  • Call the automated outage-reporting system, at: 800.POWERON (800.769.3766).
  • Customer service specialists will be available to manage customer calls should the need arise, with additional corporate responders from across all Duke Energy jurisdictions available to assist as needed.

There is also an interactive outage map where customers can find up-to-date information on power outages, including the total number of outages systemwide and estimated times of restoration.

Power restoration process

Duke Energy focuses on restoring power in a sequence that enables power restoration to public health and safety facilities and to the greatest number of customers as safely and quickly as possible. Click here for information on how Duke Energy restores power.

Important safety tips

Duke Energy encourages customers to have a plan in place if they experience a power outage. Below are tips to help you and your family stay safe.

  • Create (or update) an emergency supply kit to save valuable time later. The kit should include everything an individual or family would need for at least two weeks, especially medicines, water, non-perishable foods and other supplies that might be hard to find after a storm strikes.
  • Keep a portable radio or TV, or NOAA weather radio on hand to monitor weather forecasts and important information from state and local officials.
  • Charge cellphones, computers and other electronic devices in advance of storms to stay connected to important safety and response information. Consider purchasing portable chargers and make sure they are fully charged as well.
  • Maintain a plan to move family members – especially those with special needs – to a safe, alternative location in case an extended power outage occurs or evacuation is required.
  • If a power line falls across a car that you're in, stay in the car. If you MUST get out of the car due to a fire or other immediate life-threatening situation, do your best to jump clear of the car and land on both feet. Be sure that no part of your body is touching the car when your feet touch the ground.
  • If you need to go to a disaster shelter, follow CDC recommendations for staying safe and healthy in a public disaster shelter during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Duke Energy has a dedicated webpage to Hurricane Ian updates available in English and Spanish.

Duke Energy

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of America’s largest energy holding companies. Its electric utilities serve 8.2 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 50,000 megawatts of energy capacity. Its natural gas unit serves 1.6 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The company employs 28,000 people.

Duke Energy is executing an aggressive clean energy transition to achieve its goals of net-zero methane emissions from its natural gas business and at least a 50% carbon reduction from electric generation by 2030 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The 2050 net-zero goals also include Scope 2 and certain Scope 3 emissions. In addition, the company is investing in major electric grid enhancements and energy storage, and exploring zero-emission power generation technologies such as hydrogen and advanced nuclear.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2022 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list and Forbes’ “America’s Best Employers” list. More information is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos and videos. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on TwitterLinkedInInstagram and Facebook.

Media contact: Jeff Brooks (Carolinas Media inquiries)
Media line: 800.559.3853
Twitter: @DE_JeffB