Energy crews restore power to thousands across Hampton Roads after Tropical Storm Elsa

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – The sounds of humming from power trucks filled neighborhoods after Tropical Storm Elsa brought strong winds and heavy rains to Hampton Roads.

Roughly 8,000 people across Suffolk, Chesapeake and Portsmouth lost power Thursday night.

Construction Supervisor Jeremy Sigmon with Dominion Energy said it’s important to check your surroundings before taking your first steps outside after a storm.

“There are some dangers out there with the wire down and everything else like that,” he said. “Just make sure you’re cautious and aware of everything that’s going on and report any issues that you see.”

Most people saw their lights come back on this morning but crews said delays for other customers stem from addressing major safety concerns.

“Safety is our foremost concern,” he said. “We really want to attack the wire down concerns, make sure that we create safe yards for the kids.”

Aside from downed lines, generators can also present a risk to homeowners and repair crews if not hooked up properly.

“The thing for us, too, is also generators that are being back-fed onto the lines,” he said. “Just make sure that if you don’t know, just ask. Get some professional advice about how to hook up your generators.”

As they work to restore power to thousands across Hampton Roads, the biggest thing they’re asking for is patience.

“Everybody’s working from home, everybody’s trying to do their job and the power’s out,” he said. “We’re trying to get out there to get to all of them as fast as we can.”

By 1 p.m. Friday, one crew has already been to seven jobs.

For blown transformers, the process can take roughly an hour from when they arrive on scene to when they restore power.

“We always come out to the job, assess the areas, assess the conditions, traffic, environmental concerns if the transformer is leaking or anything like that. Come up with a game plan,” he said.

Sigmon said it’s also really important for people to report downed lines or other issues that may pop up in order for crews to address them.

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