Shots fired close to Duke Energy facility in South Carolina
An particular person opened hearth close to a Duke Energy facility at Wateree Hydro Station in Ridgeway, South Carolina, on Wednesday, CBS News has discovered.
According to a number of sources, the person pulled up in a truck outdoors the power round 5:30 p.m. ET earlier than opening hearth, utilizing what seemed to be an extended gun, after which dashing away. Several Duke Energy staff witnessed the occasion. No one was injured. It was not instantly clear how many individuals have been within the truck.
A regulation enforcement official confirmed to CBS News that pictures have been apparently fired. In a press release to CBS News, Duke Energy mentioned it’s working “closely” with the FBI to analyze the difficulty.
“We are aware of reports of gunfire near the Wateree Hydro Station in Ridgeway,” a Duke Energy spokesperson instructed CBS News. “No individuals were harmed. There are no outages reported. There is no known property damage at this time. We are working closely with the FBI on this issue.”
Kershaw County Sheriff Lee Boan on Wednesday instructed CBS affiliate WLTX-TV, “We take this seriously.” According to the sheriff, preliminary studies indicated a person opened hearth close to timber lining the facility plant. It was not instantly clear if the power itself was focused.
Ridgeway, South Carolina, is a small city of roughly 400 residents positioned throughout state traces and about 150 miles southwest of Moore County. The hydro facility — which has been producing energy for over a century — is positioned outdoors the city’s integrated limits.
The capturing comes simply days after a “deliberate” assault, through which gunfire broken two Duke Energy energy substations, brought about a widespread energy outage in Moore County, North Carolina. It stays unclear if the Moore County outage and Wednesday’s capturing are linked.
Officers from the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office have been despatched out to analyze the incident assisted by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), in keeping with WLTX.
The Department of Energy was notified of the incident.
“The Department of Energy takes the security of our nation’s power grid seriously and we work closely with industry to identify and address the evolving threats to the grid,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm mentioned in a press release to CBS News. “As power is restored in North Carolina, we’ll continue to work with law enforcement on this incident and any other threat to critical energy infrastructure. Those who commit these crimes to our Nation’s critical energy infrastructure will be held accountable.”
In January, a bulletin from the Department of Homeland Security, obtained by CBS News, warned that home violent extremists “have developed credible, specific plans to attack electricity infrastructure since at least 2020, identifying the electric grid as a particularly attractive target.” The division has not issued any steerage connecting this week’s incidents to extremism. Speaking in regards to the energy outage in Moore County, South Carolina, the secretary mentioned Monday that the assault “appears to have been deliberate.”
“We are working with energy companies in local communities to address the situation impacting the power that reaches homes in the targeted neighborhoods,” DHS Secretary Mayorkas mentioned throughout an occasion in Washington, D.C. “The question is, is it an act of malfeasance or otherwise? Early evidence suggests that it was deliberate. And the investigation is underway.”
“The utility sector has a real problem on its hands,” mentioned Brian Harrell, former assistant secretary for infrastructure safety at DHS. “Power stations are an attractive target and domestic terror groups know that destroying this infrastructure can have a crippling effect on industry, citizens, and local governments.”
The FBI continues to hunt details about the individual or individuals who it mentioned vandalized two Moore County electrical substations, turning off the lights for 45,000.
The FBI didn’t instantly reply to a CBS News request for remark.
Chris St. Peter and Pat Milton contributed to this report.
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