Strain on Entergy power grid - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Strain on Entergy power grid

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Mississippians can expect some power outages according to Entergy. Monday the utility giant feared a "perfect storm " scenario. Officials say storm damage in Arkansas, combined with high-water threats from the Mississippi river are problems.

Another strain on the system is due to hot weather. Monday Entergy purchased electric power on the open market to avoid power interruptions in Mississippi. According to Entergy Mississippi spokeswoman Mara Hartmann, "It's still going to be a significant challenge for us. Not today. We have been able to procure the energy we need to meet the power demand for today and the rest of this week. However, as we move through time with this flooding, it's sort of a day by day situation if the temperatures go down that will help, but again we are watching things day by day."

High water from the Mississippi river may eventually force disruptions for safety reasons. "A lot of people underwater in Tunica now and it's moving on downstream, obviously trouble in Vicksburg and Natchez already. Do you anticipate having to cut off energy there?"

Hartmann says, "We'll more than likely have to disrupt electrical service to some homes and businesses that certainly are flooded. Some homes and businesses not flooded may lose power as well and that is because the equipment that serves them could have to be disrupted because of rising waters."

For now, however, 2.7 million customers in Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Texas are not in danger of power curtailments or blackouts. Meanwhile, Entergy is urging everyone to conserve electricity to keep from straining the power grid. 

This will lessen the risk for power curtailment and the severity of any necessary curtailment. 

Suggestions: set your thermostat to 78 or the highest comfortable temperature. When using window units, shut doors to unused rooms, and close floor or wall registers used for heating. Keep air conditioner filters clean. Leave storm windows and doors closed when the air conditioner is on.

Close shades and drapes on the sunny side of the house during the day to keep light and heat out. Use kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans to remove excess heat and humidity caused by cooking, laundering and bathing.

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