Power outages cost some businesses big - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Power outages cost some businesses big

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Those at Julia's Florist had to get ready for Valentine's Day in the dark. Those at Julia's Florist had to get ready for Valentine's Day in the dark.

WILMINGTON, NC - (WECT) - The ice may be out of the Wilmington area, but some businesses say they are still feeling the financial impact.

For those at Julia's Florist, Valentine's Day is one of the biggest days of the year. Owner Dana Cook said they rely on the days leading up to February 14 to get ready, however, this year a power outage on Wednesday made things very difficult and cost them sales.

Cook said that without power, employees had to arrange the flowers in the dark without heat. Cook said it slowed production down. Additionally, she said that truckloads of extra flowers weren't able to make it to the shop because of the weather, meaning they ran out of some favorites earlier.

Cook said in all she estimates they lost about 30 percent of their sales. She says that's mainly because the phone lines were down Wednesday, meaning people couldn't call and place orders on a day they normally do.

"It was disastrous," said Cook. "We don't have a traditional phone system so the automatic default was to tell people that we were no longer in business. It was catastrophic for one of the busiest days of my year and the impact from the storm was significant."

It wasn't just her business, the owner of Double Happiness said losing power for two days also hurt her restaurant. She said that she not only lost business for the two days, but also had to throw away all of the meat and seafood in the coolers.

May Chen estimates it cost them around $5,000.  Even though it hurt her small business, she said she was relieved, because it could have been a lot worse.

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