Georgia’s electric membership cooperatives (EMCs) were reporting approximately 79,000 customers in northeast Georgia without power at 8 p.m. Tuesday, down from 115,000 before lunch today, and 134,000 at the height of the storm.
Significant ice accumulation caused trees and limbs to fall on power lines and damaged or destroyed power poles. A major challenge has been the difficulty of reaching these areas, so a critical part of restoration has been and continues to be removal of hundreds of trees and other debris so that crews can complete work.
Damage has been especially problematic in Forsyth, Hall, Gwinnett, Lumpkin, Dawson, Cherokee, Jackson, Banks, Barrow, Habersham and White counties.
Most EMCs estimate that the majority of customers will be restored within 24 to 48 hours, while some outages will take longer due to the nature of damage and because some outages are located in remote areas.
Utility repair crews were making some progress on restoring electricity to customers who lost service overnight and Tuesday morning, but there were still thousands of north Georgians without power just before noon Tuesday.
Georgia Power reported 58,000 customers without electricity at 11:45 a.m., with most of those customers in northeast Georgia. That number is down from 93,000 at 4 a.m.
Terri Statham, spokeswoman for Georgia Electric Membership Corp., said 115,000 EMC customers in northeast Georgia were without power at mid-morning, down from 134,000 before daybreak.
Additional coverage: Icing knocks out power to thousands, threatens morning commute