Thousands of households in the Charleston area remained in the dark Sunday night because of last week's ice storm.

Utility crews have been working around the clock to restore power. Meanwhile, the Red Cross continues to operate shelters and feeding centers.

Berkeley Electric Cooperative reported 4,596 customers without power at 6 p.m. Sunday.

"Outages will continue through the weekend and possibly into next week for some of the hardest hit areas," spokesman Micah Ponce said. "Crews will continue to work in rotating shifts to ensure that restoration efforts continue 24 hours a day until all members have service."

More than 81,000 outages had been restored since Wednesday, Ponce said.

SCE&G reported 863 outages in Colleton County, 635 in Dorchester County, 511 in Berkeley County and five in Charleston County on Sunday night. The utility reported 2,089 customers without power in Orangeburg County and 9,769 in Aiken County.

Across the state, utility companies reported about 64,000 customers without electricity late Sunday afternoon. That was down from 100,000 people without power Sunday morning.

The ice storm knocked out power for about 350,000 customers in South Carolina Wednesday and Thursday.

Red Cross volunteers opened St. Stephen Elementary School in Berkeley County and Cornerstone Community Church at 1481 Chestnut St. in Orangeburg Sunday night for those needing a warm place to sleep. Two dozen people, including 23 adults of all ages and a child, were staying at the St. Stephen shelter Sunday night, Lowcountry Red Cross CEO Louise Welch said.

"I've been impressed with how grateful everyone is," Welch said. "As one lady told me today, she's just thankful somebody cares."

Whether the shelters remain open Monday night depends on the outages, Welch said.

Red Cross volunteers also served supper Sunday at Cross High School in Berkeley County and at St. George Middle School in Dorchester County.

The Red Cross will serve meals at three locations in Georgetown at noon and 6 p.m. Monday: Ringle Heights Baptist Church at 78 Ruben Ave., Northeast Regional Recreation Center at 8189 Choppee Road and Sandpit Park at 495 Powell Road.

The Associated Press

contributed to this story.

Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.