Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) has announced it is closely monitoring the path of Hurricane Irma and preparing to respond safely and as quickly as possible should the storm impact its service area.
“Despite the fact that last year, FPL customers in Central and North Florida were significantly impacted by Hurricanes Hermine and Matthew, we estimate that approximately half of the nearly 10 million people we serve, particularly in the tri-county area, have yet to experience a hurricane, much less a major one, since 2005,” said Eric Silagy, president, and CEO of FPL. “Hurricane Irma is a very powerful, dangerous and unpredictable Category 5 storm that has the very real potential to impact Florida, and we are taking every possible action to ensure we are ready to respond. This includes preparing to move our workers and equipment to the areas most likely to be affected. With that in mind, we appreciate Gov. Rick Scott’s forward-leaning decision to declare a state of emergency, which well-positions FPL as we execute our pre-storm efforts.”
Prepare for prolonged power outages
FPL urges its customers to take the time now to prepare for potentially prolonged power outages. Additionally, given the nature of the approaching storm and expected vegetation-related impacts on FPL equipment, some customers may experience more than one outage throughout the duration of the storm.
“Every storm is different; however, the recent devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey serves as a vivid and painful reminder of Mother Nature’s fury,” said Silagy. “While we hope for the best, we owe it to our customers to prepare for the worst. We urge all of our customers to review their family and business emergency plans, heed warnings and evacuation orders by state, county, and local officials, ensure they have supplies on hand and keep a close watch on the development and track of the storm.”
Preparation and safety tips are available at FPL.com/storm. In addition, customers can download the new FPL Mobile App for on-the-go, instant and secure access to their accounts. Customers can report or get the latest information on an outage. The app is available for download in the iOS App Store and Google Play.
Invested in a stronger, smarter energy grid
Since 2006, FPL has invested nearly $3 billion to build a stronger, smarter and more storm-resilient energy grid to help us restore power faster following outages. By the end of 2017, FPL’s enhancements to the energy grid will include:
- Strengthening nearly 860 main power lines, serving critical community facilities and services, such as police and fire stations, hospitals, 911 centers, grocery stores and gas stations;
- Placing more than 450 main power lines underground (60 of which were completed after 2006);
- Clearing vegetation – a major cause of power outages – from more than 150,000 miles of power lines;
- Inspecting the company’s 1.2 million power poles every eight years, and upgrading or replacing those that no longer meet FPL’s standards for strength (approximately 150,000 poles inspected annually); and
- Installing more than 4.9 million smart meters and 83,000 intelligent devices to help predict, reduce and prevent power outages, and restore power faster if outages occur.