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With most of Dinwiddie in the dark, county leaders want answers from Southside Electric co-op

Posted at 7:08 PM, Feb 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-15 19:09:17-05

DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. -- Leaders in Dinwiddie County are concerned with the lack of communication from Southside Electric. The co-op provides electricity to much of the county. And much of the country remains without power following the weekend ice storm.

"This winter storm has probably been the most devastating winter emergency we've ever had in my tenure here in the county," Kevin Massengill, Dinwiddie County Administrator, said.

More than half of Dinwiddie County remains without power some 48 hours after the storm struck Saturday.

Ice build-up on trees, caused the limbs to fall and take out power lines across the region.

County officials said at one point, the three companies that supply electrical service to Dinwiddie reported 98.3 percent of the county was without power.

County leaders said they've heard from both Dominion Energy and Prince George Electric.

However, the county's biggest power supplier -- Southside Electric -- has not reached out, according to Dinwiddie Fire Chief Dennis Hale.

"I know that they're overwhelmed with their whole service area, but for us, we, a significant part of the county, we need information on how to best maneuver ourselves through an event like this and we need their input," County Administrator Massengill said.

Southside Electric said it updates its power status on both social media and its website.

It reports 70 percent of its entire system, which includes 18 counties and towns, are without power.

The co-op offered no timeline on when it could have power restored.

"Trying to manage an event like this when you know nearly half your community is with the Electric Co-Op, we're trying to find ways now to better communicate with Southside Electric," Massengill said.