The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

November 1, 2012

Wyoming residents left powerless in wake of storm

By Mary Catherine Brooks
Wyoming County Bureau Chief

— By Wednesday, Superstorm Sandy had left a wide path of destruction in Wyoming County.

Nearly 7,300 residents were still without electricity, according to Dean Meadows, Wyoming County Emergency Services director.

More than 10,000 residents were without power at the height of the storm on Tuesday, Meadows said.

Everyone was expected to be back on line by Friday, according to officials.

Some portions of the county received more than 2 feet of snow, some as little as 6 inches.

High wind also played a part in the devastation.

Hundreds of trees were brought down across the county, blocking roads and downing power lines.

Temporary shelters were to remain open as long as they were needed in Oceana City Hall, Mullens Opportunity Center and Cook Memorial Baptist Church in Pineville. West Virginia Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters brought in food, cots, and blankets for those using the shelters, Meadows said.

On Tuesday night, 21 people spent the night in the Oceana shelter, none in Mullens, and two in Pineville. More were expected to take advantage of the Mullens shelter Wednesday night, Meadows said.

“That’s not unusual. People will try to tough it out at home one night, then when the power doesn’t come back on, they go to the shelters,” Meadows explained.

Gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants were opening up again Wednesday, alleviating some of the worries.

Road crews and emergency personnel were still working around the clock, according to officials.

Wyoming County students attended classes Monday, but missed Tuesday and Wednesday.

The courthouse was also closed Tuesday and Wednesday, suspending early voting as a result. The courthouse was expected to be open today.

— E-mail: mcbrooks@register-herald.com