- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 23, 2021

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Some West Virginia residents must wait longer than anticipated for their power to come back on after utility crews found new damage from ice storms earlier this month.

Drone and helicopter surveillance found the new damage from the Feb. 11 and Feb. 15 storms in several western counties. Appalachian Power said in a statement Monday evening that the extent of the storm damage was “massive and unprecedented.”

About 18,000 customers were without service early Tuesday, down from the peak of 97,000 outages.

The aerial surveys revealed more damage than previously identified and included downed wires and transformers, damaged cross arms, poles, transmission towers and other equipment.

The company has revised estimated restoration times, saying some customers may not get service back in parts of six counties until Friday night. Appalachian Power said repairs are needed in at least 1,350 locations, including 600 broken poles and about 2,400 spans of wire that must be replaced.

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