Unfortunately More Heat For Thousands in West Virginia without Power
Some 200,000 West Virginians sat without power Friday facing an oppressively hot weekend, a week after violent storms knocked more than three times that many people off the grid.
Heat advisories are in place through Saturday for the Eastern Panhandle and the western half of the state, from the Northern Panhandle to the southern coalfields.
The National Weather Service said some areas could get severe thunderstorms over the weekend, too.
Ninety-degree heat and storms all week have slowed efforts to restore electricity since the powerful storm that tore across the state June 29, 2012 storm and knocked more than 680,000 households off the grid.
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has been traveling to several counties to visit with emergency management officials, while hundreds of Red Cross disaster workers provided shelter, food and help to cooling centers.
Meanwhile, the state Department of Health and Human Resources said it would offer replacement benefits to food stamp users who lost food during the outages. Recipients can apply for replacement benefits through local DHHR offices. The deadline is Monday, but the DHHR says that could be extended with federal government approval.
Frontier Communications was part of the restoration effort, too, bringing in 40 out-of-state workers to help restore telecommunications services.
It said 25 of its 230 central offices in the state are operating on generators.