Linemen with Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation are working throughout tonight to restore outages resulting from continuing high winds, snow and ice that are pulling down trees into power lines.
Damage to the electric system includes broken poles and downed lines in multiple locations primarily in Watauga and Ashe counties.
Conditions are hazardous with winds gusting to 50 miles per hour, with snow and ice accumulating on trees and power lines tonight. In some locations, trees are falling beside line crews working to repair the electric system due to earlier fallen trees. Linemen are working carefully to quickly and safely restore power.
Members are asked to report outages to the cooperative’s PowerLine: 1-800-448-2383. The public is also reminded to stay far away from downed power lines as they can still be energized, and therefore deadly. Only a Blue Ridge Electric lineman should be near downed power lines or attempt to handle them.
Currently, 149 members in Ashe County are without power while 80 in Watauga County are affected, 19 in Alleghany County, five in Caldwell County and three in Avery County.
For a live outage map, visit www.BlueRidgeEMC.com, where safety tips and other helpful information can also be found in the “Storm Room”. Also check Blue Ridge Electric’s Facebook page for updates at www.facebook.com/blueridgeemc.