Graphic showing how crews repaired the severed power line on the south side of Oregon Inlet.
Electricity is flowing once again to Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands. Considering how extensive the damage was when workers severed the line early Thursday morning.
The irony is—if it is irony—is PCL, the contractor building the Bonner Bridge replacement, was not in active construction at the time. If reports are accurate, the workers were driving a steel casing into the ground for use later, a lot like sticking a shovel in the ground when work is done.
Cutting the power line from the northern Outer Banks to Hatteras Island immediately shut off all power to the 60,000 to 70,000 visitors south of Oregon Inlet. The northern Outer Banks was not affected by the blackout at all.
The state and county moved located as many commercial generators as they could but at best they provided a minimal level of power. The result was air conditioners were turned off, water supplies were threatened, gas pumps didn't work and rolling blackouts were the norm. Access was restricted to residents and essential personnel only.
Original estimates put the restoration of power sometime next week, but kudos to the workers of Cape Hatteras Electric Coop who managed to move that timeline up by at least four or five days.
At this time, all restrictions on travel to Hatteras Island and Ocracoke have been lifted.