Zeta blows through Charlotte, leaving many without power 24 hours later

CHARLOTTE — Duke Energy crews are busy working around the clock to restore power to thousands after Tropical Storm Zeta blew through the Carolinas Thursday.

Early Friday morning, Duke was reporting roughly 80,000 customers in Mecklenburg County were still in the dark.

Channel 9 spoke with people who live in Charlotte’s Hidden Valley neighborhood, who said they are frustrated.

Rovella Jones said her power has been out for nearly 24 hours after a tree fell on power lines. She can’t work because of the outage and said she’s afraid she’ll lose her job.

“Earlier today, there was a truck that came where there was another incident right up the street where they just built a variety of new apartments and houses and new developments,” Jones said. “They fixed those lights first. They did not come down into the community where we live and assess this incident that was happening.”

When she called Duke Energy, she was told the outage may last into Saturday.

“It’s a very big inconvenience,” Jones said. “I work from home, so I need the power on. That’s me missing work. I don’t have money to pay the bill that they’re gonna ask for, for the power I don’t have. That’s me losing food out of my refrigerator because I have no power, the food’s gonna go bad.”

Channel 9 took Jones' concerns to Duke Energy, which is still dealing with thousands of outages across the city. They sent us a lengthy statement, saying they get asked this type of question a lot, and that the process is complicated.

“A large neighborhood or even an apartment complex can have power entering it from multiple directions. Sometimes one of the main lines does not experience an outage or is able to be restored more quickly because the damage is less,” Duke said.

The tree is on private property and we’ve reached out to the city to find out who is responsible for removing it so Duke crews can start their work.

Check back with wsoctv.com for updates on this story.