CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Officials with the West Virginia National Guard said relief work continued to wind down Tuesday following damage caused by Superstorm Sandy.
While last week's snow and severe weather caused widespread power outages and damage, Adj. Gen. James Hoyer said no counties had more than 50 percent of customers without power.
Crews planned to stay in eight of the hardest-hit counties today, said Lt. Col. Dave Lester, spokesman for the guard. Those counties are Fayette, Nicholas, Webster, Upshur, Randolph, Tucker, Barbour and Preston. There were still 491 service members in the field Tuesday, he said.
On Tuesday afternoon 43 percent of Webster County was without power and 41 percent of Preston County was still in the dark, an official said. The guard spent a great deal of time in Preston Tuesday and planned a similar push into Webster today, he said.
Threats of more bad weather seem to have lessened some. Another National Guard official said a nor'easter that earlier in the week appeared ready to hit West Virginia and the Eastern seaboard with more inclement weather has veered 50 miles east. That moves West Virginia out of the path of the most severe weather, although eastern parts of the state still should expect some snow and chilly weather.
Surrounding states still could face rough weather. Hoyer said it was important for the guard to keep track of equipment being used in case his service members are needed elsewhere.
In the meantime, the guard provided generators, fuel and special tents in some counties for polling places.
Hoyer said guard duties did not prevent those members who wanted to vote from casting a ballot.
"We approached the supervisors over the weekend and told them to ensure their troops had the opportunity to vote," Lester said in an email. "We allowed them to take the day to drive there and then come back after they voted."
The guard also worked with the Secretary of State's office to develop an absentee voting process for guard members on active duty, Lester said. He wasn't sure how many guard members left work or used that system to vote.