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Hundreds of Florida Duke Energy crew members head to the Carolinas to restore power during winter storms

Duke Energy says around 175 employees left Tuesday.

FLORIDA, USA — Hundreds of Florida crew members and contractors have been deployed to the Carolinas to help restore power after deadly winter weather has left millions across the country in the dark.

Duke Energy says 275 employees will be sent as a winter storm is expected to blow through the region later this week. Approximately 175 crews left Florida Tuesday, while another 100 contractors are being deployed Sunday and Monday.

The record-breaking cold weather has claimed several lives nationwide, including three people in a seaside town in North Carolina. The state's Brunswick County was struck by a tornado Tuesday.

The National Weather Service said it was "very surprised" at how quickly the storm "intensified."

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