‘It’s a tremendous inconvenience’: Couple going on a week without power

Couple going in a week without power

CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - Thousands of members of the Southside Electric Cooperative were still waiting for their electricity to be restored, including James and Sandra Lance in Chesterfield.

The couple initially lost power last Saturday after the first ice storm hit the Richmond Metro area. However, they say they’re blessed because their neighbors have stepped in to give them equipment, like a heater, to help them get by.

The loud and abrasive sound of a generator drones on for about 14 hours per day in the Lances’ backyard, but it’s how they have been getting by for the past week. Power cords connect the generator outside and snake around the floors to appliances.

They also have to sleep on their recliner and couch to be by the heater.

“It’s a tremendous inconvenience, however, we’ve been extremely blessed,” said James.

He says the local fire department has provided water to him and his neighbors, which is needed to flush the toilets.

Just one block away are homes that do have electricity restored. James says those neighbors are Dominion Energy customers, whereas the Lances are members of the Southside Electric Cooperative.

“We understand the scope of the problem. My neighbor behind me has just - in the last day - evacuated his home. He burnt up his second generator, so he threw out all his food. He left,” James said.

James says this is the longest they’ve been without power since moving here in 1993, but they’re determined to wait it out.

“When you have animals that you have to take care of and a home that you have to try to keep some heat in if you want the piping to remain good. Plus, we have neighbors, we take care of each other.”

But he says he can’t help but feel for those who don’t have that neighborhood comradery.

“We really feel sorry for those people, we keep them in our prayers,” he added.

James and Sandra tell NBC12 that perhaps the hardest thing they’re dealing with is the finances, as fueling the generator and propane tanks can total up to $40 per day.

Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.