On Friday, March 13, Duke Energy announced the steps the company is taking to make sure that power is not affected during the coronavirus crisis and the company also announced that it is suspending all disconnections for non-payment.

“As a provider of an essential service, we are determined to continue delivering the reliable power you need while helping to protect the health and well-being of our community,” the notice reads. “Since some customers may be facing unusual financial hardships, we are suspending disconnections for nonpayment effective immediately.”

The decision applies to all homes and businesses in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.

Duke Energy also stated that it would be keeping customers updated of any developments through its mobile app, web page and automated voice system.

The company stated that it is now monitoring guidance from the World Health Organization and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as maintaining communication with industry peers and government agencies.

Duke Energy also explained the steps it is taking to keep it’s workers healthy. Among other actions, the company has implemented travel restrictions and is allowing employees to work in ways that minimize interaction with other employees and with customers.

“Our employees who interact with customers will be maintaining a safe distance and using enhanced protective wear,” the March 13 notice stated.

“We’re also proactively taking steps to help ensure the stability and continuity of our operations, including resource and supply chain planning,” it added. “Delivering reliable power is our responsibility – and our commitment to you. As this situation develops, we will continue to evaluate and adapt our business continuity plans to meet this commitment.”

If the company can make good on its efforts to keep power flowing, it will be a relief to the many area residents who have cleaned area stores out of perishable foods on top of the non-perishables.