As Hurricane Irma approaches Georgia, Georgia Power is prepared to respond with approximately 3,400 personnel from the company, other Southern Company operating companies and assisting utilities identified and ready to restore power as quickly and safely as possible following the storm. All of Georgia Power’s resources are being held and dedicated to storm restoration efforts in the state following Hurricane Irma.
Georgia Power expects widespread, extensive damage from the storm. Once it leaves affected areas, the company must wait until conditions are safe for personnel to begin repairs, which could take several days, if not weeks, depending on the various factors. As weather conditions improve, restoration efforts will naturally accelerate.
When severe weather strikes, Georgia Power has access to resources available as part of the Southern Company system. Additionally, Georgia Power is part of a national mutual assistance network consisting of dozens of utilities from around the country, and the company is able to tap into reinforcements when needed to restore power to Georgia customers following a storm. While the company has contacted and requested aid through the mutual assistance network, resources have been assigned to harder-hit areas in Florida first before traveling to Georgia.
To help its employees focus on safely restoring power for customers and relieve concerns about their own families, Georgia Power has also activated its Family Services volunteers, who are preparing to deploy to areas impacted by Hurricane Irma in anticipation of employee assistance requests. Family Services is supported by employee volunteers who are not involved with storm restoration.
Prepare Before the Storm
The company also urges customers to complete their preparations before the weather deteriorates. Tips from Georgia Power to prepare before the storm:
· Note the location of power lines and poles. This makes it easier to know where downed power lines may be possible following the storm. Also, ensure that curbsides and yards are clear to allow quick repair and restoration following the storm.
· Protect electronics and appliances. Turn off air conditioners since power surges can overload them, unplug all electronics such as DVD players, televisions and computers, and move any appliances or electronics that may be located in flood-prone areas of your home.
· Secure any outdoor items that could be moved by high winds and cause damage. Move patio furniture inside where possible.
· Charge all necessary electronics, including cell phones and tablets, so you can stay connected even if the power is out. Know how to adjust the settings on mobile devices to maximize battery life and use power banks if available.
· Build or check your emergency supply kit. Consider providing an additional emergency supply kit for elderly family members or friends who may not have one.
Tools You Can Use
· Outage Alerts – Subscribe to the free Georgia Power Outage Alert service to receive personalized notifications and updates via text message.
· Outage & Storm Center – Available at www.georgiapower.com/storm, customers can visit this site to sign up for Outage Alerts, report and check the status of outages, and access useful safety tips and information. Customers can report and check the status of an outage 24 hours a day by contacting Georgia Power at 888-891-0938.
· Outage Map – Housed within the Outage & Storm Center, Georgia Power’s interactive Outage Map provides near real-time information, allowing users to see where outages are occurring across the state and track estimated restoration times.
· Georgia Power Mobile App – Download the Georgia Power mobile app for Apple and Android devices to access storm and outage information on the go.
· @GeorgiaPower on Twitter – Follow @GeorgiaPower on Twitter for storm tips, outage updates, customer service and more.