ibusinesslines.com
ibusinesslines.com November 24, 2017


Georgia customers waiting on power as of Saturday morning

17 September 2017, 08:10 | Erica Roy

Georgia customers waiting on power as of Saturday morning

GRDA crews help in Florida

"We know that the most important thing our customers want to know is when they'll get their lights back on", said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL.

In a statement, a representative of Georgia Power wrote, "While the company is working around the clock, customers should plan ahead for the potential for extended outages, possibly days or weeks, due to the vast damage from the storm".

About 176,000 customers of electric utility cooperatives around the state were still without power Wednesday, according to Georgia EMC, a trade group.

NextEra Energy Inc's (NEE.N) FPL, Florida's biggest electric company, said on Friday about 1.1 million customers had no power, while Duke Energy Corp (DUK.N) reported that more than 371,000 customers were in the dark and Tampa Electric, a unit of Emera Inc (EMA.TO), reported about 39,000 were without power.

Hurricane Irma's march across Florida and into the Southeast triggered one of the bigger blackouts in USA history, plunging as many as 13 million people into the dark as the storm dragged down power lines and blew out transformers.

Hurricane Irma knocked out power to millions of Florida customers, including 9,600 in Palm Beach - essentially the entire town.


Damage from Irma was more severe and widespread on Florida's west coast than on the east coast, which is why FPL previously said that power would be restored sooner to customers on the east side of the state. We were there with the cameras rolling when they got the news their power came back on. The utility said it has completed a "full-scale damage assessment" that allowed it prioritize work and estimate how long it will take to restore service. "Fully restoring power is my top priority and we have been aggressively working with utility providers to solve this issue as fast as possible".

"The industry's Irma response is one of the largest and most complex power restoration efforts in USA history", said Tom Kuhn of the Edison Electric Institute, a lobbying group that represents all US investor-owned electric companies.

"We have a massive contingent of tree contractors", he said. "One street or condo may have power and the next may not". "But what's important for customers to know is that we know where the outages are within our system". If one of these employees assesses the damage and notes that private property must be repaired, they will leave information for the customer noting the components that need attention and additional instructions if an electrician is needed.

"We all went through Matthew, so we have a lot of experience, unfortunately relatively recent experience, in dealing with a hurricane of this magnitude", Dinneen said. As of 11 a.m. Friday, 1.8 million customers were without power.

Florida Public Counsel J.R. Kelly said that customer communications almost always fail in major storms.



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