Power expected to be restored for Hatteras, Ocracoke in 2-3 days

The site where construction crews damaged a transmission cable, causing a massive power outage in parts of the Outer Banks. (Joe Fisher/WAVY Photo)

DARE COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) — Crews have made progress repairing a massive power outage in the Outer Banks.

The Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative said Wednesday night that it should take two to three days for restoration.

Vacation blackout: Power outage hits North Carolina islands

The cooperative initially said power restoration could take between one to two weeks.

The massive outage was sparked last Thursday after a construction crew drove a steel casing into the underground transmission cables at the Bonner Bridge. Two transmission cables were damaged, according to the Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative.

Credit: Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative

Crews have also chosen to move forward with one of two solutions that were being explored.

The cooperative said Wednesday crews will be moving forward with construction of a new overhead transmission line. Work on installing the three-phase line began Tuesday night.

Trench conditions prove to be too challenging for the excavation solution, according to the cooperative. PCL Construction was able to reveal all three lines, but water kept seeping into the trench.

The cooperative and contractors are working tirelessly to make repairs as quickly and as safely as possible.

Once the new line is complete and all of the cables are connected, the cooperative will energize the line. The line will need to stay energized for 12 to 24 hours before the cooperative can begin to gradually introduce electrical load.

Tourists evacuate N Carolina island; local businesses hurt

A mandatory evacuation for all visitors remains in effect. Thousands of tourists were forced to evacuate in the wake of the outages. The cooperative says it’s working with Dare County officials to coordinate the safe return of visitors as soon as possible.

Hyde County officials say “a number” of people were served at a disaster recovery center. Information provided there showed a number of unmet needs.

Hyde County Department of Social Services representatives will be on the island Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Officials say loss information from people and businesses will help in gauging the economic impact from the outage.

In addition, the Bread of Life Food Bank will open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday — or until food stocks run out. Officials say the Albemarle Food Bank will be helping out and making contributions.

Stay with WAVY.com continuing coverage of the outages in Hatteras and Ocracoke.