If you lived in the North Carolina Piedmont, including areas around Raleigh, Greensboro and Charlotte 21 years ago, there is a very good chance you were sitting in the dark. 

What You Need To Know

  • Over half of Duke Energy customers in the Carolinas lost power during the ice storm

  • It took up to 10 days to restore power

  • Property damage from the ice storm was estimated at $113 million

An ice storm that lasted from Dec. 4-5, 2002 crippled much of the region with up to an inch of ice accumulation.

An inch of ice may not sound like a lot, but keep in mind ice does not accumulate as much as snow does. Downed trees and power lines often begin to occur with just around a quarter-inch of ice.  

In a look back at the Dec. 2002 ice storm, the State Climate Office called it "an ice storm for the ages."

Over half of Duke Energy's customers in North and South Carolina lost power. There were more outages in both states than during Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

It took up to 10 days for crews to restore power across the central Carolinas.

According to the report from the State Climate Office, a fire caused by a space heater killed a nine-year-old boy after the storm. Another 200 people were hospitalized by carbon monoxide poisoning from poor ventilation of alternative heat sources like kerosene and gas-powered heaters.

The North Carolina Insurance News Service estimated property damage from the ice storm at $113 million.

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