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Appalachian Power Prepares For Anticipated Snow

Reported: Feb. 12, 2014 2:04 PM EST
Updated: Feb. 12, 2014 11:49 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (Katy Brown) -- Appalachian Power crews spent Wednesday gearing up for the winter weather. The power company stationed crews throughout their service areas, with many stationed in Princeton.

"We're preparing everywhere for the storm," AEP spokeswoman Jeri Matheney said.

The power company expects amounts from one inch to more than a foot of snow to fall throughout its West Virginia, Virginia and Tennessee service areas.

Matheney said if power does go out, it can take anywhere from just a few minutes to hours before it comes back on. It all depends on each individual situation.

And with the large amounts of snow, dicey roads could hinder any restoration processes on Wednesday into Thursday.

That's why Matheney suggested emergency kits just, in case you have to wait.

Some of the things you might want on hand:

-Alternative light sources, including flashlights, candles, matches, and lighters

-extra batteries

- bottled water for drinking and cooking if your power goes out

- canned goods to hold you over until power is restored


"We need our customers to be prepared because it is winter." said Matheney. "It's cold so have a plan."

And all emergency plans should include the basics:

-unplug those large appliances to avoid a power surge

-leave a light on so you'll know when the power has been restored

-if you're using a gas generator or heater, make sure your home is well ventilated

-and if you go outside, stay away from any downed power lines and do not try to remove any nearby debris


"We expect the outages not to be extreme," Matheney said. "But if there's an outage in your neighborhood, it could be several hours so you need to be prepared for that."

If there is an outage in your neighborhood, Matheney suggested you report the outage by calling their toll free number 1-800-982-4237.




CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- As a significant winter storm approaches, Appalachian Power said Wednesday it has moved nearly 100 contractors and employees into areas expected to experience the most severe effects of the winter storm.

The power company said in a news release that forecasts indicate more than a foot of snow is expected to hit parts of its Virginia service territory by Thursday. The National Weather Service said 19 counties in the Mountain State are under a winter storm warning. Charleston is only expected to receive 1 to 3 inches, but much higher totals are predicted for areas south and east.

"We have been monitoring the weather conditions closely and are taking steps to speed restoration should outages occur," said Phil Wright, Appalachian Power's vice president of distribution operations. "While some storm-related outages may occur with this much snow, we are confident our system will hold up well. In addition, our pre-planning efforts are designed to minimize any inconveniences our customers may experience because of the weather."

AEP said its meteorologists are calling for snow Wednesday evening and overnight into much of the company's Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee territory. Wright said colder temperatures and a lack of wind with this storm should limit widespread outages.

The company said it has moved about 60 line mechanics into the Roanoke area, where some of the snow is predicted. About 32 contractors will be staged in Princeton.

Customers who do lose service can speed restoration by turning off all electric appliances, including heating and air conditioning systems, until 10 to 30 minutes after power has been restored. The company said this will help prevent circuit overload situations.

Outages in West Virginia can be reported at 1-800-982-4237.

For the latest Eyewitness News Storm Team forecast, click here.



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