List: Durham opens cooling stations as crews work to restore power for thousands

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Wednesday, August 16, 2023
Widespread power outages in Durham, crews work to clear downed trees
A 78-year-old woman was killed during the storm when a tree fell on her car.

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- Durham city leaders are opening a few cooling centers as relief from the heat while crews work to restore power across the county.

Thousand of customers in Durham remain without electricity from the storm that hit the area Tuesday afternoon. The Bull City appears to be the hardest hit.

One storm-related death was reported Tuesday in Durham. A 78-year-old woman died after a tree fell onto her SUV on Anderston St. near Morehead Avenue.

Duke Energy said the damage is extensive and will require extra workers for repairs and restoration.

List of cooling centers in Durham

All Durham County Library locations are cooling centers and are now open during normal business hours: 9:30 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday and 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.

Note: The Bragtown Branch Library does not have power and the Stanford L. Warren Branch is closed for renovations.

  • Durham County Main Library, 300 N. Roxboro Street
  • East Regional Library, 211 Lick Creek Lane
  • North Regional Library, 221 Milton Road
  • South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Avenue
  • Southwest Regional Library, 3605 Shannon Road
  • City of Durham Weaver Street Recreation Center, 3000 E. Weaver Street; Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

East, North, South, and Southwest Regional Libraries are open and cooling but have no public phones or internet.

The Main Library is open with phone and Internet. Parking at the Main Library is limited, but there is a parking garage open across the street.

While library locations typically have a strict no-food policy in place inside buildings, residents may bring in beverages at this time. Snacks for small children and adults with health complications are also being allowed.

LIST | Durham Road closures

Free Ice

While supplies last Harris Teeter in Durham is giving out 10-pound bags of ice with a limit of 2 per family who have been impacted by the power outage. Here are the 3 locations, all in Durham:

  • King's Plaza Shopping Center: 3457 Hillsborough Road
  • Riverview Shopping Center: 5116 North Roxboro Road
  • North Pointe Shopping Center: 1802 North Pointe Drive

RELATED | Here's how to report and check power outages in your area

Stay safe! Do's and Don'ts

  • Stay away from downed wires and report the location immediately.
  • Always assume any downed wire is live.
  • Avoid making contact with branches or debris that may be in contact with downed power lines.
  • If you see a fallen power line or safety hazard involving our equipment, call your power company or call 911 immediately.
  • Do not touch a power line or anything in contact with it and keep others away until help arrives.
  • Never, ever use a generator indoors.
  • Never use a gas stovetop or oven to heat your home.
  • Turn off or disconnect appliances, equipment, or electronics. Power may return with momentary surges or spikes that can cause damage.
  • Keep freezers and refrigerators closed.
  • The refrigerator will keep food cold for about four hours.
  • A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours. Use coolers with ice if necessary.

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What to do after power is restored

Anyone with branches and trees down is going to want to get it cleaned up. Power companies warn that you or anyone working for you should use caution when clearing fallen tree limbs and debris from your yard after a storm.

  • Always assume the downed line is live.
  • Be mindful of debris with sharp edges, glass or nails
  • Wear gloves and closed shoes
  • Don't walk in standing water

Food in the fridge or freezer

  • Throw away any food that has been exposed to temperatures 40 F (4 C) for 2 hours or more or that has an unusual odor, color, or texture. When in doubt, throw it out!
  • If food in the freezer is colder than 40 F and has ice crystals on it, you can refreeze it.
  • Contact your doctor if you're concerned about medications having spoiled.
  • Restock your emergency kit with fresh batteries, canned foods and other supplies.

Here are some hacks to keep your phone charged during a power outage

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