Electric Power Associations of MS Activates Emergency Work Plan - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Ridgeland, MS 08/29/08

Electric Power Associations of MS Activates Emergency Work Plan

RIDGELAND, Miss. - The statewide organization representing Mississippi's 26 electric power associations is activating its emergency work plan as T.S. Gustav approachesthe Gulf of Mexico.

 "We have a comprehensive emergency work plan for restoring electricservice. If an electric power association suffers damage to its system, we are prepared to move emergency crews into its area to assist with the restoration of power," said Michael Callahan, CEO of the Ridgeland-based Electric Power Associations of Mississippi.

"Our emergency work plan is constantly reviewed and updated as needed," added Callahan. "In our industry, a detailed plan is standard procedure and a must to restore electric service quickly and safely after any disaster. Hurricane Katrina was the real test for our plan, and we graded high in our recovery efforts."

Since Hurricane Katrina, electric power associations have used their emergency plan several times in response to smaller storms. After each storm and periodically throughout the year, Callahan said, organization officials meet to review and revise their comprehensive statewide plan. "Our emergency work plan has been tested many times, and each time we evaluate our actions and make changes as needed."

As soon as a hurricane threatens the Mississippi coast area, electric power association personnel are placed on standby and readied to relocate to affected areas. These trained workers bring with them the necessary equipment and materials needed for storm power-restoration work.

Electric power associations, which provide electric service to more than 730,000 meters in Mississippi, also take part in a regional response system. "There are times, as with Katrina and the ice storm of 1994, that the magnitude of work to be done is so great that we request assistance from our sister organizations throughout the southeastern region," Callahan said.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, more than 12,000 highly skilled emergency crew members from 22 states were involved in the restoration of electric service to more than 500,000 electric power association customers.

Electric power association officials urge everyone to practice good safety habits at all times and stay away from downed power lines. If you plan to use a generator during a power outage, be sure it is connected properly. If not installed correctly, generators can be dangerous to customers and utility workers.

Electric Power Associations

of Mississippi



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