Crews work to restore power in Giles County, prepare for potentially more outages

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GILES CO., Va. (WDBJ7) Heavy snow earlier this week knocked out power to more than a thousand customers in Giles county. Thursday morning more than 1,800 customers were in the dark.

Now power crews are preparing for what could be another dose of heavy snow this weekend.

Crews rolled in early Thursday, repairing the damage from this week's heavy snowfall.

"This operation is 24-7," said Jerry Leonard, the Safety and Health Coordinator at Appalachian Power.

Outside Pembrook, wind and heavy snow knocked a tree on a power line cutting off power to homes in this rural area of Giles County.

"You'll see the contract crews, they're in here now getting ready to put some wire up, a tree is across the line and they're going to get that off and safely put all this back together," Leonard said.

This is just one of several power restoration projects this team tracked down Thursday, climbing through the valleys and over the mountains to turn the lights back on.

Appalachian Power crews from Virginia and West Virginia spent much of their day replacing lines high in the sky. By Thursday afternoon, about 100 customers were without power.

"A lot of people don't realize what you go through to get the power back on. I wish it was just as easy as flipping a switch, but that's not the case," Leonard said.

The constant harsh weather this year is keeping the power team busy.

"When we have these incidents like this we pull resources from within our company around so these guys have been working pretty much nonstop for the last three and a half, four weeks," Leonard said.

Giles County opened a shelter Wednesday night at the Giles County Rescue Squad building for people without power. The County Administrator says no one showed, but he's ready to open it again if people need a warm place to stay.

Crews tell me they are monitoring the snowy weekend forecast and preparing teams for what's predicted to come this way. Right now they're focused on the impacts of this week's storm.