Duke Energy, Red Cross prepare for possible power outages from snow in WNC

Heavy wet snow may mean widespread power outages across the mountains. Red Cross officials are urging residents to be prepared and compile emergency kits. (Photo credit; WLOS staff)

Heavy wet snow may mean widespread power outages across the mountains.

Duke Energy crews were getting ready for the worst Wednesday. They were checking supplies and equipment, and, if needed, they are ready to call in crews from out-of-state.

"Customers should be prepared, if they do experience a power outage,” Duke Energy spokesperson Meghan Miles said.

She added that customers should be prepared with an emergency kit with nonperishable foods, and make sure their cellphones are charged.

"We're just really encouraging everyone across Western North Carolina to be prepared for large amounts of snowfall, no matter what that number is," Rebecca Pittman, the disaster program manager for Western North Carolina’s Red Cross chapter, said.

Here was the list of other items that should be in an emergency kit, she said:

  • Water
  • Blankets
  • Change of clothes
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Hygiene items
  • Battery-powered weather radio
  • Medications
  • Supplies and equipment for pets

Pittman also recommended people have a kit in their home and vehicle and make sure there are enough supplies to last at least three days.

Pittman also said some county emergency managers may even ask Red Cross staff to open shelters, where conditions really deteriorated.

"Based on the specific forecast for that county and what typically happens when there is snowfall in those counties," Pittman said.

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