Canadian electric company helps Irma victims

13 September, 2017, 14:20 | Author: Lula Armstrong
  • NBC Charlotte

In Florida, the state's biggest electric company said its outages dipped to 3.3 million from a peak of 3.6 million earlier on Monday.

More than 50,000 utility workers - some from as far away as Canada and California - are responding to the crisis.

On the west coast of Florida, customers can expect to be "essentially restored" by September 22.

"We know that being without electricity creates hardships, and we are grateful for our customers' patience as electric companies work day and night to assess damage and to restore power where and when conditions are safe to do so", said Kuhn.

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Counties affected by Florida Power & Light outages.

"This is not a typical restoration that you're going to see". It then focuses on transmission lines that deliver to large areas, and then concentrate on critical facilities such as hospitals, police department and 911 centers. The electricity company would then turn its attention to areas that are home to supermarkets, gas stations and other community services.

More: Hurricane Irma: What's happening in Pensacola Monday? Irma, which ranked among the most powerful storms in the Atlantic, has nevertheless tested those systems.

"We've never had that many outages, and I don't think any utility in the country ever has", FPL Chief Executive Eric Silagy said at a news conference on Monday.

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Some parts of Florida's distribution system - the lines that deliver electricity from power plants to businesses and residences - run underground.

Duke Energy has equipped 28 percent of its system with technology to reroute power remotely, according to Harry Sideris, Duke's state president for Florida. Duke Energy outages totaled 1.2 million in Florida, with almost 100,000 customers restored in the early stages by midday Monday, the company said.

In Texas, the Department of Energy estimated that over 300,000 customers were left without power in the hurricane's wake. "We can't give a time frame now. However, we're looking at a week or longer from the first look at the widespread damage that we had", Sideris told CNBC's "Closing Bell".

Gulf Power crews prepare to respond to Hurricane Irma on Monday morning, September 11, 2017. When utility crews can finally access flooded substations, they will need to wait for equipment to dry out before they can inspect for damage before switching the power back on, the DOE points out.

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