RICHMOND, Va., June 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Dominion Virginia Power expects to restore power by overnight Wednesday to the vast majority of customers affected by a powerful, fast-moving storm that passed through the Richmond metro and Williamsburg areas around 2:30 p.m. Monday. A few isolated areas where restoration is most difficult may remain without power until Thursday morning.
More than 1,700 linemen and support staff currently are engaged in the effort, with additional crews from other utilities joining the effort today. Crews working overnight Monday night restored power to more than 120,000 of the 192,000 customers affected.
"We thank our customers for their patience as we work to restore their power," said Rodney Blevins, vice president of electric distribution operations. "We are focused on getting the lights back on for our customers quickly while maintaining safety as our first priority – safety of our customers and safety of our crews."
The storm brought strong winds with reported gusts of up to 95 miles per hour, bringing down trees, limbs and severely damaging utility poles, cross-arms and power lines in isolated and scattered areas.
"Please stay away from downed lines and anything touching them – assume they are energized, and report them by calling 1-866-DOM-HELP (1-866-366-4357)," Blevins said. "We also ask that you help protect our linemen when you see them on the roadside making emergency repairs by moving over from the lane nearest the workers or by slowing down until you pass the site of the repairs."
Customers should call 1-866-DOM-HELP (1-866-366-4357) to report an outage and not count on their neighbors to report it. Reporting an outage promptly – even if neighbors have done so – speeds the restoration process.
When calling Dominion, please have your account or phone number that is listed on your account so you can move through the automated system to report your outage or receive an update. The calls will be answered by an automated voice response system, which is the quickest way to report an outage or downed power line, or by call-center representatives. Customers who have online accounts can report outages and ask to be contacted by telephone when outage restoration information becomes available.
The highest priority for power restoration is always given to public safety and emergency facilities such as hospitals, emergency 911 call centers, and municipal water pumping stations. A video description of the storm restoration process is available online at http://www.dom.com/storm-center/how-we-restore-power.jsp.
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 27,500 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation's largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's Web site at www.dom.com.
SOURCE Dominion Virginia Power