Appalachian Power Preparing for This Weekend’s Storm

CHARLESTON– Appalachian Power crews are preparing for potential power outages as a storm packing wet and heavy snow is set to hit its Virginia and West Virginia service areas this weekend.

The expected track of the storm indicates snowfall across much of the company’s service area. In some areas snowfall could be heavy, wet and deep enough to damage trees. Broken limbs and trees falling from outside rights-of-way can cause power outages. As the weather system moves closer and forecasts are refined, the storm’s impact will become clearer.

As with similar weather systems over the past couple of weeks, Appalachian Power is securing additional workers in advance of the storm. Line workers and contractors from across the company’s three-state service area are packed and ready to travel from unaffected areas to areas with power outages.

Some of these crews will move Saturday morning into areas where damage is expected. Appalachian Power has also secured commitments from workers outside the company’s service area, should their help be needed.

Customers who do not have power may check for an updated restoration time and other information by:

Customers can also prepare for the storm by assembling an emergency kit with flashlights and fresh batteries; candles, matches, or lighters; water for drinking and cooking; canned goods and a manual can opener, and other supplies. A mobile cell phone charger also is useful. In outages during very cold weather, customers can assist restoration efforts by keeping electric heating systems and water heaters turned off until several minutes after power is restored.

Appalachian Power has 1 million customers in Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee (as AEP Appalachian Power). It is a unit of American Electric Power, one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity and custom energy solutions to nearly 5.4 million customers in 11 states. AEP owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a more than 40,000-mile network that includes more 765-kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined. AEP also operates 224,000 miles of distribution lines. AEP ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning approximately 26,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP supplies 3,200 megawatts of renewable energy to customers.

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Tyler Barker is currently the News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. He was promoted to this job in Mid-November. He still will fill in on weather from time to time. You can follow Tyler on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email him at tbarker@woay.com