PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) – It's the biggest need for a hurricane and sometimes the hardest to meet: Electricity. More…
PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) – It’s the biggest need for a hurricane and sometimes the hardest to meet: Electricity.
More than a week after Hurricane Michael entered the Florida Panhandle on a road to destruction that led all the way to Georgia’s border, more than 100,000 customers in Florida were still without power, according to the Ministry’s Emergency Management website.
Martha Reynolds sat outside her mother’s home country home Friday with relatives, including several young children in a low-income Panama City neighborhood. The elen has been shut down since the day Michael struck.
Light and torches light after dark, she said, turning a generator at night to drive an air conditioning that cools four adults and five children.
“We try to eat the grill and keep as much ice as we can,” she said. “We all look at each other, we are all here, so it’s a blessing.”
A few streets over, Justin Ward’s family gathered under a canopy under a shady tree in front of their hot, powerless homes.
“We do it. The power is on a street. It’s supposed to be here tomorrow,” he said.
While more than half of the disruptions are in Bay County, where the storms entered the coast of Mexico Beach and Panama City, rural counties had a larger proportion of people without power eight days after the storm. It includes Calhoun County where 86 percent of local electricity cooperatives had no electricity.
“We try to make sure they understand how widespread the damage is and we use every resource we can possibly get it as fast as we can,” said Jeff Rogers, a spokesman for Gulf Power, who earns most of Bay County and seven other counties in the region. It does not serve Calhoun. “This was an unprecedented storm.”
And it’s not a simple problem to solve quickly. Only in Bay County were thousands of toolbars blown or clipped in half as toothpicks. dropped over roadways or thrown on the ground spagetti.
Many transmission gates ̵
1; the huge metal structures that bring electricity to substations that lead it to specific neighborhoods – left in twisted piles or knocked
Several power stations were damaged and There were countless disturbed connections to individual homes.
New power poles and lines quickly emerge on a visible sign of progress.
Long Lines with lorries hit the Panama City streets every morning on their way to areas where the service is still out. Workers hung in buckets from nine trucks stretched lines along a street Thursday, and the same scene was repeated countless times every day.
Rogers said that many of the Gulf Power’s power sources – solar, gas and coal plants – are outside the storm region, so the power is available when transmission lines, transformers and toolbars and lines are repaired. It will only be a matter of turning the switch.
A week after the storm, Gulf Power had replaced 5,600 tool coils, a process that could take as little as 10 minutes or much longer due to damage to the pole, connections to it, as well as trees and debris that could make it harder to access to that, Rogers said.
Gulf Power has about 1,200 employees working with energy conservation, supplemented with 6,200 people from 15 states that help.
But also far from the Hurricane coast, the northern rural community also fought. In Jackson County along Georgia and Alabama, more than 80 percent of customers were left without power one week after the storm.
“Our power grid is completely destroyed,” said Rodney Andreasen, county’s asset management director. “Right now, our greatest need is to get power back. Power regeneration.”
Rogers said that great concern is that people get used to dead power lines lying on the ground or dragging in front of the houses. When the services are reset, these lines can be fatal.
Tells that there were families in Lynn Haven who used power lines in front of their injured houses as a provisional clothesline, he said: “Oh my goodness. It’s a little scary. Just stay away.”
“We begin to start and people become obvious after being a little around them, “he said. “It’s been a week without power and you’re a bit used to being careful about them.”