States prepare for potential power surge amid solar eclipse

Experts warn that when sunlight returns after the eclipse, there will be a sudden surge of power which could overload power systems.
2:18 | 08/09/17

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Transcript for States prepare for potential power surge amid solar eclipse
Also this morning, people are gearing up for the total solar eclipse. Now just 12 days away. Around 12 million Americans are in its path stretching 70 miles wide and 3,000 miles long from Oregon to South Carolina. T.J. Holmes is here with how states are preparing for the power surge. Good morning, teej. More and more Americans are getting their electricity from solar power. What happens when the sun goes away? Regulators are working pretty hard to make sure your lights don't go out when the light goes out. Small towns are turning into boom towns as millions flock to rural America to catch a glimpse of the rare solar eclipse. I'm really excited about it. Reporter: When the skies darken across the United States, electric companies will face a massive challenge. How to avoid power disruptions and a post-eclipse surge that could cripple the nation. Grid operators are urgently transporting energy across the country to propose for the temporary shortfall in solar depleted regions. For several minutes at a time between the hours of 11:35 and 2:35 eastern time the moon will totally obscure the sun in 14 states. This will strain solar production similar to the effect of shutting down 15 power plants all at once. In California where nearly 5 million homes are supplied with solar power officials are urging residents to unplug and conserve energy use saying, quote, let's give our hard working sun a break. North Carolina right in the prime path of the eclipse ranks number two in the country for solar power. We want to make sure we have our power plants in reserve that can take up the slack when the eclipse is happening but also be able to pull them back when that solar starts to operate again. Reporter: And get this, another issue has to do with cell phone usage because some of these rural towns, your population is 6,000. It will grow to 150,000 people coming to check it out. Your cell phones won't work so they're bringing in cell phone towers and everybody will try to send out a picture and you won't be able to get those messages. Also little league world series is going on at this time. They'll play through it. Their solution, turn the lights on. Really. They're going to play through it. Hit a switch. It won't be a full eclipse where they are, pretty significant coverage of the sun but they're just going to turn the lights on and you won't miss a pitch. We're going to play ball, yes. Thank you, man. All right, Michael.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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