Gulf Power Crews Deploy To Restore Power After Irma

Gulf Power Crews Deploy To Restore Power After Irma

Gulf Power Crews Deploy To Restore Power After Irma

Electricity company Florida Power & Light said on Monday it was doing final checks before bringing back nuclear reactors that were powered down as Hurricane Irma hit Florida.

The 100-person storm team was set to depart Tuesday morning.

"Even with Irma's downgrade to a tropical storm, Irma has caused widespread damage across the state and continues to cause power outages in Northwest Florida", said Jeff Rogers, Gulf Power spokesperson. From there, the crew is bound for the Sarasota area and work under the direction of Florida Power and Light, he said. In Miami-Dade County, 815,650 customers are without power, which represents just under 80 percent of FPL's residential and business accounts, the Sun-Sentinel reported.

Alongside FPL, Duke Energy reported more than 1.2mn customers were without power and Tampa Electric reported about 328,000 customers in the dark. "We are working on that", said Rob Gould, FPL's chief of communications from FPL's command headquarters. "It's what we do - we're there for our neighbors in their time of need and when we need them - they send the troops to us".

"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.

FPL has about 17,000 utility workers ready to help its restoration efforts, which could be significant.

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Hurricane Irma has claimed at least 45 lives in the Caribbean and United States thus far.

"Restoring power to our Gulf Power customers will be our priority".

Georgia Power reported no problems with its power plants, including its Vogtle and Hatch nuclear power plants, which it noted "are created to withstand significant hazard events, including hurricane force winds and flooding".

The company has 20,000 restoration workers in the field, assessing and repairing damage day and night.

Gould estimated that FPL positioned "17,000 restoration workers from about 30 states" in anticipation of fix efforts before the storm arrived, but said that flooding from storm surges and traffic congestion as residents return home this week would delay the project.

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