Electric crews work around clock to restore power after violent wind storm

Crews throughout the area continue to work around the clock to restore power to homes around the area. At Dominion Energy, crews are working around the clock to get people out of the dark.

Officials are calling this storm one of the top five most damaging ever -- right up there with Hurricanes Floyd, Isabel and Irene.

Staffers coordinate and dispatch thousands of roving crews, while workers and staff have come from as far away from Florida, working 12-hour shifts.

Dominion began with 7,000 customers without power, when the winds started late Thursday. On Saturday evening, they were down to less than 100,000, but still tons of work to do. There were under 55,000 customers without power by Sunday afternoon.

They say it's unusual to have such high winds for so long, that the damage has been widespread and significant -- even in some places catastrophic.

"There's always a challenge. Customers want to know from day one, from the first hour, how long will it take to get my lights back on and it's hard to predict. So we've had several situations where we've restored service and before the crews leave, we've had trees fall on the same area and create damage again," said Kevin Curtis, Vice President of Technical Solutions for Dominion Energy.

Dominion says their biggest issue has been the downed power polls, which take longer to repair and replace. It can also put these crews in danger with the high winds still sticking around. On Mill Road in Alexandria, they have been without electricity since Friday at noon. One lady tells us she's holding out hope for finally a warm night for Saturday, but she knows it could be a while.

"It's chilly in the house, but we have a fireplace so we keep that going. We talked to some of the electricians yesterday to ask them what they thought for timing, and they said they couldn't tell because the wind was so strong they couldn't get up on their ladders, their cherry pickers, and it was more important for them to be safe," said Ellie Wagoner.

They expect 80 percent of their customers to be back online by Monday night. The rest should have power by Tuesday end of the day.