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By Erin Smith

Widespread power outages are being reported in Bladen County on Friday morning, as Hurricane Florence continues to pummel the area.

Duke Energy is estimating a total of 280,000 customers are without power in North Carolina. In Bladen County, an estimated 1,700 Duke Energy customers were without power as of 7 AM Friday morning.

To report an outage to Duke Energy, please report it via our website, text OUT to 57801, or call 800.419.6356.

Four County Electric’s outage reporting map shows multiple power outages in Bladen County. An estimated 1,500 customers were without power as of 7 AM.

To report an outage to Four County Electric, call 888-368-7289.

Four County Electric is also warning customers to be aware of Utility Scams. If customers receive a text message, email, or telephone call demanding payment they are asked to hang up and call Four County Electric immediately at 1-888-368-7289.

The Electrical Safety Foundation International offers some tips for dealing with downed power lines after the storm:

*Downed power lines could still be live. So, do not touch the downed lines and move away. Downed lines can energize an area up to 35 feet away.

*Do not drive your car over downed power lines.

*Call the electric company and notify them of the location of the downed line.

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