HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Electric companies in the path of Hurricane Florence are making final preparations as the storm approaches the South Carolina coastline.
Horry Electric Cooperative says linemen stand ready to respond to any areas that may be affected by the hurricane's impact. The electric company has crews lined up from Illinois, Georgia and North Carolina which means an additional 150 line workers are on their way to join their forces.
As soon as it's safe to start the restoration process, when winds are less than about 30 miles per hour, that's when linemen start repairing the damage. Crews will work 16 hours a day to help restore power, but the electric company urges people to be prepared for the possibility of prolonged outages.
Horry Electric Cooperative CEO Pat Howle says during Hurricane Matthew in 2016, it took them 7 days to get power restored for 73,000 customers.
"This isn't our first rodeo, our employees are great at restoration. They really thrive under that pressure so we don't look forward to it but we are ready," he said.
Howle urges anyone medically dependent on electricity to go to a shelter or make sure they have their own resource like a generator. He says they can't guarantee a time when people will get their power back.