Dominion Assessing Damage, Beginning Recovery From Hurricane Irene's Impact in Virginia, North Carolina

RICHMOND, Va., Aug. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --

  • 1.2 million customers affected; second-largest restoration effort after Isabel
  • Damage assessment, overall estimate of restoration time to be available by noon Monday
  • More than 6,000 personnel to be involved in the restoration

Dominion crews in Virginia and North Carolina are assessing damage and working with local emergency personnel today to return electrical service to 1.2 million customers, focusing first on public health and safety facilities.  The Hurricane Irene restoration effort is the company's second largest behind only Hurricane Isabel.

"We are helping local officials restore the critical services that help keep our communities safe," said Rodney Blevins, vice president of distribution operations for Dominion Virginia Power and Dominion North Carolina Power. "We have begun the restoration process following the extensive damage brought by Hurricane Irene."

By noon tomorrow, Dominion expects to complete the assessment of damage and have an estimate of when restoration for all customers will be complete.  

More than 6,000 line workers and support personnel will be involved in restoring power, including line workers from utilities from Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina and South Carolina.  Dominion is working closely with state emergency management and transportation officials.

Motorists are reminded to help protect personnel on the roadside making emergency repairs by moving over from the lane nearest them and slowing down until they pass the repair site.

Priority is given to repairing circuits serving hospitals, water pumping stations, police and fire departments and other emergency locations.  As critical infrastructure circuits are restored, efforts focus on restoring power to the greatest number of customers in the shortest amount of time. A video description of the storm restoration process is available online at

Storm restoration information is available online at An outage information map is available on Dominion's website at

If your electricity is interrupted:

  • Do not rely on your neighbors to report your outage. Call Dominion at 1-866-DOM-HELP (1-866-366-4357).
  • Stay away from fallen wires, flooded areas and debris.  Treat all fallen wires as though they are energized, and report them by calling Dominion at 1-866-DOM-HELP (1-866-366-4357).
  • Follow safe operating procedures for generators. Never operate one inside your home or in an enclosed space, such as a garage.
  • Do not connect portable generators directly to the electrical system of your home. Electricity could flow backward onto Dominion's power lines and endanger lives. Either have a qualified electrician perform the work or plug appliances directly into the generator using the proper-sized extension cords.
  • If using portable or camp-type stoves or lanterns for cooking and lighting, ensure the area is adequately ventilated.
  • Visually inspect the area around your electricity meter. If you detect or suspect any damage, call Dominion toll-free at 1-866-DOM-HELP (1-866-366-4357).
  • Turn off major appliances such as heat pumps, water heaters and stoves. Unplug other appliances such as TVs, stereos, microwaves and computers. This will prevent damage to the appliance and possible overloads to the company's system when power is restored.
  • Leave one lamp or light on so you will know when power is restored.
  • Listen to your local radio station on your car or battery-powered radio for regular news and weather updates.
  • Additional information on a wide range of electrical safety topics is available online at

Dominion (NYSE: D) is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 28,200 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 website at

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Note to editors: Updated figures on outage information is available online at  

SOURCE Dominion Virginia Power; Dominion North Carolina Power