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TVA asks Alabama customers to reduce power usage during winter storm

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The Tennessee Valley Authority sent out a Tweet for its customers during the longest frigid cold snap to hit Alabama since 1989. The nation’s largest public utility asked businesses and the public in a tweet to reduce usage as much as possible without sacrificing safety. The Tennessee Valley Authority provides electricity to ten million people in Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia, also warned that there may be brief, intermittent power outages.

Tens of millions of Americans endured bone-chilling temperatures, blizzard conditions, power outages and canceled holiday gatherings from a winter storm that forecasters said was nearly unprecedented in its scope. The last time Alabama endured cold weather this bad and this long was when President George H.W. Bush was in the White House. The current cold snap is exposing about 60% of the U.S. population to some sort of winter weather advisory or warning.

The National Weather Service said more than 200 million people were under an advisory or warning today (Friday.) Power outages have left more than 1.4 million homes and businesses in the dark, according to the website PowerOutage, which tracks utility reports.

The tracking site FlightAware says more than four thousand flights were canceled, causing more mayhem as travelers try to make it home for the holidays. Some airports, including Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, closed runways.

Pat Duggins is news director for Alabama Public Radio.
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