AEP crews work to restore power throughout Southwest Virginia

AEP crews replace wires that broke due to the ice storm.
AEP crews replace wires that broke due to the ice storm.(WDBJ)
Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 8:10 PM EST
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BOONES MILL, Va. (WDBJ) - Most of the ice from Thursday is melting away Friday, but there are still some people in our hometowns without power.

Appalachian Power crews have been all over Southwest Virginia, helping turn the power back on.

A section of Back Creek Road in Boones Mill turned into a one-way street Friday, as AEP employees worked to bring power back to residents in the area.

“There were a couple of spans that had broke from some fallen branches and some smaller fallen trees, and so there is a business partner crew here now that is making the repairs,” Timothy Wyatt, Safety and Health Coordinator for AEP, said.

Once the spans--wires connected to power poles also known as conductors--are replaced, power can be restored. But there are still many spots across across Southwest Virginia looking for power restoration after Thursday’s Ice storm.

“We have over the last several days experienced issues where trees have fallen, limbs have fallen onto the conductor and broken the lines, repairs have been made, and then overnight as everything refreezes and more sleet enters our service territory, then some of the same trees, some of those same branches from those same trees begin to fall on the line again,” Wyatt explained.

Workers replaced around 150 broken poles and put about 750 spans of wire back up following the ice storms. Some of the spots with downed wire are up steep hills.

“There are still some outages that are not easily accessible so that will take a little more effort and a little more time,” he said.

AEP officials said as of Friday afternoon, the remaining 1,000 customers without power should have service restored by 10 pm. Friday.

“Now the problem we have now is simply just the saturation of the ground . . . and there’s also concerns for trees giving way and once again causing some other concerns or problems,” Wyatt said.

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