In the Carolinas, Duke Energy preparing for Hurricane Matthew's anticipated fury

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  • Company has thousands of personnel in place in anticipation of widespread power outages

  • Extensive damage could result in extended outages

  • Everyone should focus on safety as the storm approaches

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- As Hurricane Matthew approaches the east coast of Florida, officials there are telling residents there will be power outages.

And, if people do not take proper precautions, there will be fatalities.

The storm, which has restrengthened to Category 4, with winds reaching around 140 miles per hour, continues to track toward the Carolinas and is expected to arrive Saturday.

Thousands of Duke Energy personnel are being mobilized and are ready to respond.

"We've stocked our trucks and warehouses, completed our readiness plans based on Matthew's projected path, and coordinated with local, state and national emergency personnel to ensure we have the most optimized response," said Bobby Simpson, Duke Energy's Carolinas storm director. "You can't beat the forces of nature, but we will do everything we can to restore power as quickly and safely as possible."

As part of the company's preparation efforts, teams completed aerial inspections of the main transmission lines in the coastal North Carolina area to verify that trees were safely cleared away.

We've identified potential flood zones and trained workers on how to access alternate travel routes to reach damaged areas.

We've finalized resource plans and more than 2,300 line workers are prepared to descend on the communities where damage and outages occur.

The company today reiterated what customers should do in anticipation of Matthew.

  • Customers in communities where the storm is expected to hit need to finalize plans now to stay safe. If you lose power, response crews will begin work AFTER the storm has exited the area and winds have subsided.

  • Emergency kits should include:

    • Flashlights with extra batteries

    • Portable radio with fresh batteries

    • First-aid kit

    • Canned or packaged food that can be prepared without cooking or refrigeration

    • Several days' supply of drinking water

    • Portable (and fully charged) cell phone charger

    • Prescription medication

  • Families who have special medical needs or elderly members should closely monitor weather forecasts and make plans for potential alternate arrangements should an extended outage occur.

  • 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.

  • For employee safety, Duke Energy line technicians do not perform elevated work in bucket trucks when winds are above 30 miles per hour.

  • Charge cell phones, computers and other electronic devices in advance of the storm to stay connected to important safety and response information.

Duke provides a free service that automatically provides registered customers with information about specific power outages, including estimated restoration times, cause of outage, Duke Energy crew status, and outage start and estimated end times, and number of customers affected.

As part of the program, customers can text OUT to 57801 to report an outage from their mobile phone. To stay informed of future power outages, customers sign up to receive power outage alerts from Duke Energy by texting REG to 57801 or choose from text, email or phone alerts by enrolling at:

For more information, visit:

About Duke Energy

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is an S&P 100 Stock Index company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at

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