Laurens, South Carolina – Utility companies servicing Laurens County and the South Carolina Department of Transportation are taking steps to prepare for the projected winter storm tonight and tomorrow.
The SCDOT announced it was to begin sanding or salting roads on Thursday and would continue work as needed, and encouraging motorists to stay off roadways once precipitation begins.
Electric providers have not only been making sure equipment is services and ready, but are also networking with other utilities in case mutual aid is required here or elsewhere.
“We are prepared for the worst but hope for the best,” said Clinton Department of Utilities Director Joey Meadors. “This is not what we want to see but we prepare from summer through fall by clearing trees from right of ways. Two years ago we had a January rain and wind storm and the major issues were trees in people’s yards falling across our power lines. Things like that we don’t have control over.”
Laurens Commission of Public Works director John Young said keeping branches off overhanging trees is a year round job which shows its worth at times like this.
“The key is keeping the leaves and trees trimmed along the power lines because ice causes the worst issues,” Young said. “Freezing rain accumulates on limbs and that’s usually the problem when we have outages.”
A release from Laurens Electric Cooperative explained it had its regular crews plus numerous contract crews on standby to handle outages as quickly as possible.
To report a power outage or damaged equipment, LEC asks that cooperative members call 1-866-9RESTORE, and to call the cooperative prior to the storm to update phone numbers since that’s how LEC lets members know where outages have occurred. The LEC office is 864-942-3141.
Duke Energy asks that customers who experience a power outage should report the outage by texting OUT to 57801 or view current outages on the Duke Energy app or at www.duke-energy.com/outages.