OUTAGE REPORT: Blue Ridge Energy line techs battling ice storm disruptions

OUTAGE REPORT: Blue Ridge Energy line techs battling ice storm disruptions
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Special Report to Blowing Rock News. By Renee Whitener of Blue Ridge Energy. November 24, 2018. LENOIR, NC — Blue Ridge Energy line technicians are battling downed trees and damaged power lines to restore power after an overnight ice storm that has impacted the cooperative’s service area in Caldwell County most severely.

Additional line technicians have been called to assist Blue Ridge Energy crews repair damage in 262 different locations on the cooperative’s system. The cooperative thanks those assisting from sister cooperatives Union Power and Energy United, and tree contractor crews Sumter Utilities Inc. and Asplundh Tree Expert Co.

As of 10 am Saturday, 2,242 members remain without power with 1,520 of those located in Caldwell County where the following areas are most severely impacted: Zacks Fork Road, Patterson, Ferguson and the Abingdon Road areas. Additionally, there area: 408 in Wilkes County; 159 in Watauga County;  67 in Alexander County; 58 in Ashe County; 14 in Alleghany County; and 2 in Avery County.

Outages began at 2:21 am Saturday morning and the height of the outages occurred at 6 am when 5,378 members were without power.

The cooperative reminds members to report all outages by calling 1-800-448-2383 or by using the Blue Ridge Energy mobile app. Outage updates are available any time on the cooperative’s live outage map at www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com or on the mobile app.

Downed power lines pose a safety danger: the public is warned that downed lines can still be energized and therefore dangerous, even deadly. Blue Ridge Energy advises the public to stay far away from downed lines and report them by calling 1-800-451-5474 or 911 immediately. Only a trained line technician working with the cooperative should go near a downed power line.

Blue Ridge Energy serves some 76,000 members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, and Alleghany counties as well as parts of Avery, Alexander and Wilkes counties. Learn more at www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com or on the cooperative’s social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About The Author

As Editor and Publisher of Blowing Rock News, David Rogers has chosen a second professional career instead of retirement. For more than 35 years, he served in the financial services industry, principally in institutional equity research. He grew up in the oilfields north of Bakersfield, California and was a high school English major and honors student. From an economically disadvantaged family background, he worked his way through college (on grounds crew and in dining hall, as well as advertising sales for college newspapers), attending Johnston College at the University of Redlands, Claremont McKenna College, and California State University, Bakersfield. Other jobs to pay for college included a Teamsters Union job in South Central Los Angeles, a roustabout in the central California oilfields, and moving sprinkler pipe and hoeing weeds in the cotton fields west of Bakersfield. Rogers' financial services industry career took him from Bakersfield to La Jolla and San Diego, then to Chicago, New York City, San Francisco, Newport Beach and Charlotte before arriving in the High Country in 2000 to take a volunteer position coaching the rugby team at Appalachian State University and write independent stock market research. He spent three years as a senior financial writer for a global financial PR firm with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Shanghai, Beijing, Tel Aviv, and Frankfort (Germany). Rogers is the author of "The 90% Solution: Higher Returns, Less Risk" (2006, John Wiley & Co., New York). He is married to wife Kim (Jenkins Realtors), and shares in the joy provided by her three grown children and five grandchildren.

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