- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 12, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Thousands of people are without electricity after the outer bands from Tropical Storm Irma swept across North Carolina.

Duke Energy reported about 60,000 customers without service early Tuesday. The biggest problems were reported in Buncombe, Mecklenburg and Jackson counties.

At least 16,000 other customers had not electricity, most in western North Carolina.

No storm deaths have been reported. No serious injuries had been reported early Tuesday.

Wind gusts of nearly 50 mph (80 kph) were reported.

The Blue Ridge Parkway closed Monday afternoon because of high winds, as was Mount Mitchell State Park.

Chimney Rock State Park was also closed Monday afternoon. Officials planned to examine the park Tuesday morning in hopes of opening around 10 a.m.

Some schools were closed Tuesday and others planned to open later than usual.

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