UPDATE: Restored Power in Lincoln Co. Helps Local Businesses

By: Lauren Schmoll Email
By: Lauren Schmoll Email

UPDATE 11/2/12 @ 7:40 p.m.
LINCOLN COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- There are still thousands of people without power in West Virginia,but overall it is a much better situation than we faced this past summer.

Appalachian Power says lessons learned during the derecho, the violent windstorm of late June, are getting the lights back on faster.

And for local businesses, a few extra days with power, can make all the difference.

“It's been pretty rough,” Shana Dingess said. “It scares us when the power goes out. 'Cause what do you do?”

Shana Dingess' family owns the L & D Country Restaurant. She's also a waitress there. She knows firsthand what it means when the power goes out: lost money.

“With the power out, it's huge,” Dingess said. “Last time we had to run it on a couple generators and we lost a lot of food.”

When the derecho hit in the summer, the power was out for nearly a week. They were afraid of something similar this time around.

“We were trying to prepare,” Dingess said. “Not order as much on our trucks and everything.”

You can imagine their surprise -- when the lights came back on after just a few hours.

“We were so thankful that it came back on,” Dingess said. “We all hurried up and got ready and came back down to open up for everybody else in the community.”

Appalachian Power says most customers should be seeing their power come back more quickly after this storm -- due to lessons learned during the last one.

“We haven't had the logistical issues that we had during the derecho,” Appalachian Power’s Jeri Matheney said. “Those were some of our most difficult problems to solve. Getting crews in. Lodging those crews and feeding those crews. This time that's been pretty smooth.”

And that means Shana Dingess and her family can keep feeding their customers.

“We're very thankful it was only out for a couple of hours this time,” Dingess said.

LINCOLN COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- It was a downed power line that led WSAZ.com's Lauren Schmoll to Joey and Victoria Tully.

She had heard things were bad along their road and went to check it out. A few miles later, she found that a falling tree branch not only knocked out power, but it left the power lines lying in the road in front of their home. Leaving them in the dark.

“I just thought, well now, how long we gonna be without power this time,” Joey Tully said.

Victoria Tully says they’re making do.

“Cooking on the grill,” Victoria Tully said. “Outside. In the cold.”

“We got a generator ... We can pump us up some water,” Joey Tully said. “Take a cold shower. There's nothing to do. Just wait.”

There is someone who isn't cold at Joey and Victoria's house -- 15 someones, in fact. Two days ago, their hog delivered 14 piglets. To make sure they stayed alive, Joey had to make sure they had heat.

“It's a pig's life,” Joey Tulley said. “Yeah, now that's a pig's life.”

Those piglets are providing the entertainment. While Schmoll was there, a couple neighbors stopped by to see this real-life scene from "Charlotte's Web" and get some firewood.

Neighbor Vickie Hager says those pigs have it better than a lot of people do right now.

“It's warm. It's dry. They're cute,” Hager said.

She was surprised by the snow -- and not thrilled to see it.

“I just expected a couple of inches,” Hager said. “I thought it would miss us. I wish it would've.”

As Schmoll was getting ready to go, there was another surprise. Power crews were already there -- getting the lines out of the road, representing a comfort in the cold.

“Cause eventually I know the power's going to be back on,” Joey Tulley said.

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