Nearly two days after Tropical Storm Michael swept through the area, thousands of people are still without power.
Michael caused 600,000 power outages, making it the 6th largest storm Dominion Energy has had to deal with in the company’s history. The latest update from Dominion Energy said it had restored 80% of power.
But on Saturday night, at least 70,000 customers in Virginia were still in the dark. More than 10,000 of them were here in Hampton Roads.
For Heidi Felder and her family in Virginia Beach, Saturday evening was a day of clean-up from the storm. Her husband, Mr. Felder, helped neighbors out by mowing their lawns and clearing debris from their yards. Their power went out at around one a.m. Friday morning. Getting through the outage was a challenge.
“It gets real deep,” said Mr. Felder.
“I didn't know how dependent we were on energy until it goes out. We were lost.”
They needed it more than others. Their 20-year-old son, Christian Felder, has special needs.
“He needs an iPad to communicate,” said Heidi Felder.
“No electricity, no iPad, no internet. We're like, ‘Uh-oh.’”
The outage forced them to spend some time outdoors. They took their son for a walk in the park and around the neighborhood.
“We saw neighbors we haven't seen in months,” said Mr. Felder.
Most of their neighborhood was dealing with power outages too. Being without power actually ended up bringing neighbors together.
“Last night everybody jam-packed all the restaurants. We packed up the movie theater. We didn't have any electricity, we gotta find something to do. We did the bonfire,” said Heidi Felder.
“It made it fun for everyone, even though it was not fun. Just trying to get out and help each other and keep things going, especially for the kids.”
Lucky for them, their lights were back on Saturday evening.
If your power is out or if it goes out this weekend, make sure to report it. You can do that on Dominion Energy’s website, or by calling 1-866-DOM-HELP.