BUXTON, NC (WVEC) -- Thousands of people are without electricity on Ocracoke and Hatteras islands.
The Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative (CHEC) says the outage is a result of PCL Construction, the company who is building the new Bonner Bridge, drove a steel casing into an underground transmission cable during construction.
The outage prompted Governor Roy Cooper to declare a State of Emergency for the islands in Dare and Hyde Co.
“This declaration will allow us to move much needed resources through the state as quickly as possible to help restore the power to Ocracoke and Hatteras Islands,” Governor Cooper said.
Ten thousand tourists have been ordered to evacuate a North Carolina island following a power outage.
The evacuation order issued for visitors to Ocracoke Island in Hyde County went into effect at 5 p.m. Thursday. Officials say no one will be allowed onto the island unless they can prove residency.
Hyde County public information officer Donnie Shumate says there are some 10,000 visitors on the island. He said the main concern was for their safety, adding that officials want to get visitors off the island by noon on Friday.
CHEC says they're using diesel generators to proved temporary power to Buxton, Frisco, and pat of Hatteras Village, but are asking residents to conserve their power usage, and not run their AC units.
Additional portable generators are being brought to Hatteras Island, but residents in the area should expect rolling blackouts to come.
To reduce fire risk during a power outage, use flashlights or battery-operated lanterns instead of candles. Remember portable generators should only be used outdoors because they can produce high levels of carbon monoxide very quickly.
The Dare County Water Department also issued a water conservation alert to customers on Hatteras Island, because water production capacity has been diminished due to the outage. Officials say the water quality is unaffected, and is safe to drink.
No roads or bridges have been impacted by the outages in Dare County.
An outage map can be found HERE.
CHEC is examining the extent of the damage, and that if the materials are on-hand, repairs to the transmission cable could take several days to complete. If the materials needed are not locally available, the repairs could instead take weeks.
© 2017 WVEC-TV