As Duke Energy crews worked to restore power to the last 30,000 households affected by Hurricane Matthew, the company reported successful rebooting of 96 percent of its customers’ power as of Friday.
The utility said that with the exception of flooded areas in the Carolinas, it expected nearly all of the rest of its 1.5 million customers along the East Coast to be back on the grid over the weekend. At the peak of the storm’s damage, nearly 1.5 million customers were impacted.
"Our commitment is steadfast for staying engaged with our customers in flooded communities," Bobby Simpson, who is leading Duke Energy's restoration efforts, said. "We are working with state and local officials in developing plans to restore service as safety and quickly as possible once waters recede and homes are habitable."
Officials encouraged patience among residents.
"We are entering a new phase in restoring power — one that will be dictated by events out of our control,” Simpson said. “But we will continue working just as hard. We are in this for the long haul. We have the personnel and equipment, and we will be in these communities until every last customer who can receive power has power."
Matthew is calculated to have been the fifth worst storm on record for Duke’s service area. The company has contributed over $325,000 for relief efforts in several states including Florida.