Thousands Still Without Power

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The severe storms that rumbled across North Carolina and South Carolina are long gone, but their effects are lingering.

Duke Energy said about 72,000 customers in North Carolina remained without power Wednesday morning, more than 24 hours after the storms raced across the state. Guilford, Gaston and Mecklenburg counties were the hardest hit.

In South Carolina, the utility reported 8,600 outages, with more than half of them in Spartanburg County.

Duke Energy says it has called in extra crews to help restore power, but warns it likely will be Friday before electricity is restored to everyone.

The utility reported 256,000 customers without power at the peak of the storm. That’s the most outages since 470,000 lost power from storms in April 2007.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All rights reserved.)