Thousands of Power Outages, Accidents Reported in Ice Storm
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) — Officials warned and now it’s here. This week’s ice storm already has hundreds of thousands in the dark, statewide, and contractors from various states are here to help. “In a matter of hours, it can accumulate, all those branches can come crashing down and just like snapping your fingers, multiple outages all at one time,” says Doug Payne, Fairfield County Electric Cooperative. But, some Midlands counties have nearly gone unscathed when it comes to power outages. “It’s been a waiting game all day long. We thought we’d have freezing rain by now, but luckily not,” says Payne. The highways are a different story. According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, state troopers have responded to more than 2,000 weather-related calls, that’s compared to 646 at this time last year. State and city leaders are comparing this week’s storm to the ice storm of 2004, that storm was compared to Hurricane Hugo and some say the ice storm outdid the devastating hurricane. Today, crews are working to dig Columbia out of ice and residents are warned to stay off area roadways.