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Eastern Shore forecast creates 'perfect storm' for power outages; workers, residents prepare

A projected combination of strong wind gusts and heavy snow may create power outages along the Eastern Shore over the weekend.

CAPE CHARLES, Va. — The Eastern Shore is under a Blizzard Warning, with anticipation of strong winds and snow. 

Friday, people shopped for essentials to ride out another winter storm, including at Table and Tonic in Cape Charles.

"Everybody is talking about 'The Storm,'" said Jeanette Coulter, a sales associate at Table and Tonic. "They’ve already been planning by coming in today to get puzzles and sandwiches and cocktail mixers."

Table and Tonic will be closed Saturday, while store employees hope to reopen on Sunday. 

It’s the second straight weekend where snow is changing their plans.

“It gets bitter cold and people don’t want to walk around Cape Charles," Coulter said. "It has impacted the amount of people that come and go in here." 

With blizzard-like conditions expected, leaders at A&N Electric Cooperative said they’re preparing for significant power outages. 

“It’s like a perfect storm for outages, with the heavy winds and heavier snowfall. The potential for line damage is there,” said Jay Diem, communications and public relations coordinator for the company.

Diem asked drivers to stay inside and off the roads if possible, to lower than chances that disabled vehicles would delay power restoration.

He said it’s also important to avoid downed power lines. 

“Be patient, we work all through the night, we work until its all over and we have (everyone’s power) restored.”

Diem said crews are prepared for “prolonged outages” due the the forecasted conditions, and the company’s operations center will remain open throughout the storm. 

Coulter said what’s next, is to see what happens overnight 

“I guess when we wake up we’ll find out.”

A Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel spokesperson told 13News Now drivers should “use common sense” when thinking about crossing. 

CBBT leaders said they’ll monitor wind gusts like usual before issuing advisories, and they have crews ready to clear the roads. 

Energy company leaders remind people to be careful with generators and alternative fuel sources; make sure to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and potential fires. 

If you need to call in a power outage to A&N Electric Cooperative, the number is 757-787-9750.

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