As a powerful winter storm moves through the state today, Governor Roy Cooper and state officials urged people to stay home and stay safe, and to exercise caution if your power goes out.
“For today, the best way to avoid a car accident or getting stranded is to stay put,” said Governor Cooper. “Fewer people on the road means fewer car crashes, plus it allows highway crews and utility workers to get faster results.”
Several inches of snow have fallen in western counties, and snow and ice are causing dangerous travel conditions in the central part of the state.
If you must travel, State Highway Patrol officials advise reducing speed, increasing following distance and clearing all the snow and ice off your vehicle before traveling.
More than 90,000 homes and businesses statewide were reported without power across the state at 1:30 p.m. and power outages are continuing to increase.
Some counties have opened or are preparing shelters or warming centers for people who are without power and heat for an extended time.
North Carolina Emergency Management recommends these safety tips if your power goes out:
- Report power outages to your electric utility company. Refrain from calling 911, except for life safety emergencies.
- Keep cell phones and mobile devices charged before power goes out.
- Operate generators outdoors and away from doors and windows – never in your home or garage, deadly carbon monoxide fumes can accumulate.
- Never burn charcoal indoors or use a gas grill indoors.
- Use battery-powered sources for light, not candles.
- Keep freezers and refrigerators closed. Adding ice or snow from outside can help keep contents cold.