As TECO monitors Hurricane Irma, we urge you to ensure that your household is prepared – that includes having an updated emergency plan for your family, knowing the location of your appropriate emergency shelter and taking special steps to have medicine and other critical items you might need on hand for every member of your household.
While we’re focused on safety and service for you, we have responsibilities to the entire community in the event of a severe weather situation. That’s why we spend more than $55 million annually in a 10-point plan to harden the system against severe weather – a plan that includes infrastructure replacement, tree trimming and pole inspections.
All communities we serve are equal to us. During a widespread power outage, our goal is to restore power to the largest number of customers in the shortest possible time. Severe weather can bring with it a lot of unpredictable factors, and we focus on safety – for our team members and you – above all else. Before our crews can go outside to begin repair work, we must make sure conditions are safe and that winds are below 40 mph.
When large areas lose power, especially if severe weather is ongoing, we take a priority restoration approach to restoring service. Here’s how it works:
- Electric service is restored to critical services facilities first – hospitals, disaster centers and main police and fire stations. This enables these places to help with other storm-related problems or injuries.
- Water and sewer installations are next.
- After that, we focus on communication service providers and facilities providing important public services such as supermarkets, home improvement/building supply centers, insurance facilities, etc.
- Then we repair electrical circuits that provide power to the largest group of customers, followed by the remainder of the circuits until the power is back on for all our customers.
It’s possible that your neighbors’ power may come back on while yours is still out. Because of the widespread damage a storm can cause, crews might need to make repairs at multiple spots along a single electric service line. As repairs are completed, some customers may receive power while others may still be out of service. Sometimes, different customers have different service lines, even within the same neighborhood. If you are on the same service line as your neighbor, you may also have damage to your meter that is interrupting electric service to your home.
Thank you for taking responsible steps for to ensure that your household is ready for severe weather. And in the event of communitywide outages, thank you for your patience as we work around the clock to restore power to everyone as quickly and as safety as possible.