PINELLAS COUNTY, Florida – Responding to viewer questions and internet rumors about Duke Energy mismanaging its emergency response crews, 10Investigates sought out answers from the source.
Rumor 1: Duke Energy wasn’t allowing crews to work overtime
A Duke representative tells 10Investigates that work crews are out in the field for 16-hour shifts right now, with the only limiting factor involving safety.
Because many of the fixes involve live wires in customers’ backyards and risky areas, Duke doesn’t allow out-of-town contractors to work in those areas at night; only Duke crews are working overnight there.
Furthermore, a group of contractors from Illinois told 10Investigates they have been working long days everyday, from sunrise to sunset.
Rumor 2: Duke Energy is wasting resources by having crews sit around and wait
That same crew told 10Investigates there is some down time, as Duke dispatches one crew at a time. But the crew said it was a necessary evil, because after fixing major downed lines, most remaining fixes involve small breaks in the electrical grid: small lines down in hidden or remote places.
Spot-checks of other Duke activity hubs, such as Derby Lane, reveal few electrical trucks during the day, but hundreds returning at the end of the shift at night.
Rumor Verdict: False
Help our journalists VERIFY the news. Do you know someone else we should interview for this story? Did we miss anything in our reporting? Is there another story you'd like us to VERIFY? Click here.
© 2017 WTSP-TV