Sept. 8, 2017 – As part of its long-standing tradition of assisting other electric companies during large-scale power outages, FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE) utilities will send nearly 900 linemen, damage assessors, electrical contractors, forestry crews and support personnel to help utilities in Florida with restoration efforts following expected power outages from Hurricane Irma.
The crews are scheduled to leave for Florida early Saturday morning from various FirstEnergy utility facilities in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia and Maryland, with all personnel expected to arrive at a staging area in Lake City, Florida, by Sunday evening.
Current forecasts call for Hurricane Irma to impact all areas of Florida. As the damage is assessed, FirstEnergy personnel will be deployed to the most damaged areas when it is safe to do so after the storm moves through.
All 10 of FirstEnergy’s utilities are part of the mutual assistance effort, which includes crews from Ohio Edison, The Illuminating Company (CEI) and Toledo Edison in Ohio; Penelec, Penn Power, West Penn Power and Met-Ed in Pennsylvania; Mon Power in West Virginia; Potomac Edison in West Virginia and Maryland; and Jersey Central Power & Light in New Jersey. Support personnel from FirstEnergy’s corporate offices also are included in the company’s contingent.
“FirstEnergy employees are committed to assisting with what is likely to be a massive power restoration effort in Florida,” said Steven Strah, senior vice president and president of FirstEnergy Utilities. “While it’s not expected that Hurricane Irma will impact any FirstEnergy service territories, we have carefully assessed conditions and are confident we have the personnel in place to maintain reliable operations for our customers, while also assisting those in need in Florida.”
FirstEnergy is a member of multiple electric utility mutual-assistance groups that work cooperatively to restore service to customers when a natural disaster causes large-scale power outages. Mutual assistance allows utilities to pool their resources to help restore power to customers faster. In the past, FirstEnergy and its employees have been honored by the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) with its “Emergency Assistance Award” for the mutual assistance the company has provided during winter and summer storms.