Peak hurricane season is upon us, now through late October.
After a relatively quiet season in Northwest Florida, Tropical Storm Gordon swept through Northwest Florida, causing power outages for 26,000 Gulf Power customers. It was the perfect opportunity to test a new procedure to help get power restored more quickly.
This season, Gulf Power’s general warehouse team incorporated an idea learned last year while helping restore power following Hurricane Irma: pre-assembling storm kits filled with everything the crews and support personnel need for repairs, from fuses to breakers, wire and bolts.
“Previously, it took a full day to get a storm kit ready,” said Gordon Paulus, Gulf Power spokesperson. “Now our warehouse team loads these pre-assembled kits on a truck in about half an hour, allowing crews to essentially grab and go when they’re called out for storm duty.”
These kits contain almost all of the necessary items needed to work on the lines and cuts down on the time it takes to assemble them on the fly.
“Having these kits ready to go means our crews are able to begin repairs more quickly after damage from a major storm,” Paulus said. “The bottom line is that this helps them get our customers power restored more quickly.”
Each Gulf Power storm kit is made up of seven bins. Each kit is weatherproofed and labeled so crews can easily find what they need and two full kits can fit into a tractor-trailer rig. In addition, two of these kits are specially prepared for beach environments and include stainless-steel material resilient to salt spray.
During Tropical Storm Gordon, two of the storm kits were used in the Pensacola area as crews worked to restore power.
“As Gulf Power maintains storm readiness, we also encourage our customers to stay prepared despite with the quiet season we’ve had so far,” Paulus said. “We encourage our customers to stay connected to us on social media — Facebook, Twitter and Instagram — for the most up-to-date storm news, whether it be a hurricane, tropical storm or even a severe thunderstorm.
Check out these storm-ready tools:
- Find storm updates on the Gulf Power homepage. If a storm enters the Gulf of Mexico, Gulf Power is on alert and watches the storm’s path and projected direction and will provide customers important information.
- Visit outagemap.gulfpower.com. View power outages in real-time, track your estimated power restoration, report an outage, receive power out alerts and more.
- Sign up for Outage Alerts: Register on your cell phone by texting REG to MyGulf (694853). You’ll receive a text back to confirm the registration. You can also use our Preference Center, where may choose whether to receive texts, emails or phone calls. Log in to your account and set your Outage Alerts options.
- Check out the Gulf Power Storm Ready site ahead of a storm.
- Stay up to date on the latest Gulf Power news at GulfPowerNews.com.From bolts to fuses, each storm kit has a wide selection materials that are used in storm restoration.