Gulf Power Restores Power To Essentially All Customers; EREC Completes Restoration

September 22, 2020

Gulf Power has restore power to essentially all customers affected by Hurricane Sally, while Escambia River Electric Cooperative has completed their restoration efforts.

Sally made landfall as a Category 2 hurricane on September 16 near the Florida-Alabama state line – exactly 16 years after destructive Hurricane Ivan made landfall in the same location.

More than 285,000 customers, or nearly 63% of Gulf Power’s customers, experienced outages as Sally brought heavy rain and severe flooding, especially in the western Panhandle. For EREC, 95% of their members in northern and Santa Rosa counties lost power.

GULF POWER COMPANY

Gulf Power has safely restored service to essentially all of its customers who were affected by Hurricane Sally, completing restoration ahead of original estimates, the company said.

Gulf Power assembled a restoration workforce of 7,000 working primarily out of 12 staging sites to restore power for its customers safely and as quickly as possible – which was accomplished within 5 days after Sally left Gulf Power’s service area and it was safe to begin restoration work.

“I want to thank our community partners for their support in so many ways as we worked together to get our region back up and running,” said Marlene Santos, president of Gulf Power. “We know that getting the power back on is critical to beginning to restore normalcy for communities. I also want to thank our dedicated employees and the mutual assistance crews who worked around the clock to help us get our customers’ lights back on ahead of schedule – and most importantly, we completed this work safely.”

As Gulf Power winds down major restoration efforts, the company is closing some of its staging sites and releasing some of its restoration workforce. Among those providing mutual assistance was Gulf Power’s sister company, Florida Power & Light Company, which sent more than 1,800 employees and contractors in support. Gulf Power recently sent nearly 70 employees to South Florida when Hurricane Isaias was threatening the state.

“Mutual assistance is a hallmark of our industry. Just as Gulf Power has been happy to assist other utilities with restoration efforts, we appreciate the willingness of FPL and others to step up and help us serve our customers in their time of need,” Santos said.

Customers who still do not have power should first check their breakers. If this is not the issue, they should report the outage on the Gulf Power App, online at GulfPower.com or using the automated system at 1-800-GU-POWER (800-487-6937).

ESCAMBIA RIVER ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE

Escambia River Electric Cooperative announced that as of about 5:45 p.m., every member that is is able to receive electricity has had their power restored.

EREC reported 95% of their members, 11,463 total customers, without power after Hurricane Sally across northern Escambia and Santa Rosa counties.

“We thank our membership for their patience and tremendous show of support as our line crews worked to restore power as safely and quickly as possible. We thank our fellow cooperatives who sent their line crews to assist us in our time of need to rebuild our battered system. We are proud to be a part of the cooperative family,” EREC Vice President Sabrina Owens said.

Comments

10 Responses to “Gulf Power Restores Power To Essentially All Customers; EREC Completes Restoration”

  1. Sarah Witter on September 24th, 2020 3:28 pm

    A big heartfelt thank you to all the linemen who worked so diligently to get our power up and running again here in Escambia county and other counties!! 5 1/2 days is very impressive to get everybody’s power restored! We would be in a world of hurt if it weren’t for the amazing lineman restoring the power. Thank you again for your service to our community!

  2. Sue Byrd on September 24th, 2020 7:13 am

    Dear Marlene Santos, president of Gulf Power, in the Wildwood Lakes Sub., Bauer Rd. power was restored by lineman from N.Carolina. However, when pwr restored on 9/20/20 @ 4:08 pm a spike was recorded @ 6:59 pm. Then today at 9/24/20, spike at 5:00 am, then a power surge, then another spike, another power surge, then power back on. I do report via Gulf Power app but what is the problem and do not say “a squirrel”. I have recorded spikes & power surges since 2012.

  3. David on September 23rd, 2020 10:54 am

    Thank you for all the crews also from out of state who helped
    Thats what its all about..people helping people.
    Sincerely

  4. Michael Rollo on September 23rd, 2020 8:40 am

    I appreciate all of the power crews and related personnel, both local and out-of-town, and the work they did to get us up and running again.

    I do question how GP has re-oriented its emergency power restoration strategy after being bought-out by the successor company, and think it needs to be re-examined.

    Former GP employees have advised that it was a largely unorganized “cluster” operation and not handled in the efficient and proficient manner GP had used in the past, post hurricane. In other words, the priority of restoration ran amok, and it was largely hit or miss with much inefficiency, poor crew placement, and lack of communication.

    We all are relieved — of course — when the power comes back on and tend to quickly and happily forget the misery of going without. However, that does not excuse the inefficiency in restoring it, even when GP can crow about meeting the deadline it set, because with a better plan, ALL power could have been restored sooner and in a more efficient and effective manner.

  5. Greatful on September 23rd, 2020 6:16 am

    Three big cheers to all involved ESPECIALLY the out of state crews who left friends and family and quickly responded to this disaster!! THANK YOU!!!

  6. Rasheed Jackson on September 22nd, 2020 9:25 pm

    Thanks to all the people who made this happen! It is greatly appreciated.

  7. Galvygirl on September 22nd, 2020 9:09 pm

    Thanks not only to all the Gulf Power folks,but also to all the out-of-state folks who came in to help. Met some great people from Ohio and Pennsylvania as they were working! I hope they never know firsthand what it’s like to do totally without power for so many days! God Bless !!!

  8. Dale on September 22nd, 2020 6:07 pm

    My shout out to the power crews and their incredible work. Thanks for working endless hours and through the elements to get our power back on. Don’t mind the Karen’s complaints. They are a spoiled generation.

  9. Mickey Allen on September 22nd, 2020 11:43 am

    I just wanted to thank all of the wonderful different power companies that have restored our power though out the area. As hard as they have had to work they still had a very nice attitude when asked a question. I would like to thank each one of them for their wonderful service.

  10. Mat on September 22nd, 2020 11:28 am

    I just wanted to say Thank You to all those involved
    in restoring our power. It is greatly appreciated.





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