"They had a lot of impact across the state in this past year, so those will be the two main topics right there," Tom Hart, director of the Marshall County Office of Emergency Management, told WTOV.
Last year's power outages led to local fuel shortages as worried drivers filled their tanks and homeowners their portable generators.
Jan Vineyard, executive director of the West Virginia Oil Marketers and Grocers Association, said each storm is a learning experience for gas stations and convenience stores.
She said stations typically keep their fuel inventories low since costs are high and fluctuate wildly but now try to stock up when severe weather is on its way.
Vineyard said some stations also have purchased backup generators to keep the lights on, the freezers running and the gas pumps pumping.
Little General Stores, which have locations throughout the state, have purchased several portable generators the company can move to stores affected by outages.
"That's kind of the nature of our business. We're so tied to fuel supply and other things .<\!p>.<\!p>. that's why they're called convenient stores. We have to be convenient," Vineyard said.
Last year's storms also caused ice shortages as local ice plants went offline after power outages and stores quickly sold out of on-hand supplies.
Brian Penturff, manager of Eastern Ice in Beckley, said there is little his company can do to be ready for another, similar storm.
"To get a generator big enough to run the ice plant -- I could build another ice plant for that," he said.
Although Eastern Ice was without electricity for only 24 hours, Penturff said it took the company two and a half months to catch up with customer demand.
"We were running at full capacity and had all of our customers completely full. Within 24 hours, we didn't have a customer with ice," he said. "It was an absolute perfect storm."
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