Mobile, AL. (WKRG) – Electricity has become an essential part of our everyday lives and getting the power back on after a hurricane hits is important. Power crews across the Gulf Coast are preparing and getting ready for what this upcoming season may bring.
One power company is Florida Power and Light. Sarah Gatewood says the company holds an annual storm drill. “We simulate a hurricane hitting, and actually go through a whole restoration effort to understand where we might be seeing pain points or need to make adjustments.”
Florida Power and Light uses a number of mobile command units during their recovery efforts. These units help power crews stay in touch in affected areas while they restore electricity, but they can also be used by the community too. “We’ll but the news on…so they can stay engaged and informed. There’s also outlets where [people] can charge their phones and other devices. And it can even be used as a station for remote work.”
Florida Power and Light is not the only power company that is preparing for the hurricane season. Alabama Power also works to have a plan in place and adjusts the plan as need with each season. “Every season is different,” Beth Thomas with Alabama Power says, “but we always have a plan…and we’ll be ready to respond when the power goes out.”
Beth says Alabama Power includes suppliers, vendors, and weather experts in their planning. And, their employees are trained to take on roles that may be different from their normal, day-to-day jobs. “Some [workers] may deal with additional crews that come in from out of state, help coordinate meals or various other things that may be needed for our workers.”
Even Baldwin EMC gears up before the season begins. “We have our pre-storm meeting, we’ve checked our inventory, and our supplies are ready,” Mark Ingram, the Vice President of Corporate Services and Public Relations with Baldwin EMC says their crews go through extensive training in order to prepare. “There’s safety training, line maintenance training, distribution systems training, so all of our employees…and fully ready for the hurricane season when it comes.”
All power companies emphasize that customers should prepare now; gathering supplies and signing up for outage alerts and updates via the company’s websites. They also ask to be patient as crews work to get the lights back on quick and safely as possible.