FPL marks end of 2012 hurricane season today, but continues year-round focus
on readiness for weather events
JUNO BEACH, Fla., Nov. 30, 2012
JUNO BEACH, Fla., Nov. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --With today marking the formal
end of the hurricane season that officially started June 1, Florida
experienced its seventh-consecutive year without a direct hit from a
hurricane. Tropical systems, however, are powerful forces of nature. Florida
Power & Light Company and its customers were impacted by four major storms in
2012 and provided significant support to those in the northeast.
(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120301/FL62738LOGO )
This storm season demonstrated that no electric company is storm proof and
that FPL has a comprehensive storm plan that focuses on readiness, restoration
and recovery to respond safely and as quickly as possible if a major storm
strikes its service territory.
"Though storm season might be done on the calendar, we prepare year-round for
weather and other events that have the potential to disrupt service. Our goal
is always to minimize the impact on our customers," said FPL President Eric
2012 Storm Season
This storm season, which saw early tropical activity, brought four named
systems (Tropical Storm Beryl in May, Tropical Storm Debby in June, Tropical
Storm Isaac in August and Hurricane Sandy in October) that collectively
disrupted electric service to nearly 900,000 of FPL's 4.6 million customers
across the state. FPL line workers demonstrated their technical skills as they
safely restored power to more than 80 percent of customers within 8 hours of
their service interruption.
"Even when a hurricane does not make landfall in our territory, the associated
tropical storm force winds, rain and flooding that often come with these
massive systems can cause damage or interfere with restoration efforts," said
Silagy. "We are on a peninsula in Florida with hundreds of miles of coastline.
As much as we prepare, storms can damage power lines and equipment, causing
FPL Received Mutual Assistance Twice During 2012
As part of mutual assistance agreements, FPL coordinates with other utilities
to receive out-of-state support. These preparations, along with ordering
restoration equipment and supplies and securing staging sites throughout
Florida prior to hurricane season, enable the company to quickly deploy crews
and equipment to storm-damaged communities.
FPL received mutual assistance from partnering utilities twice during 2012:
oFor Tropical Storm Isaac, FPL pre-staged almost 2,500 additional line
personnel and electrical contractors from partner utilities as far north
as Pennsylvania and as far west as Ohio to respond to Isaac. Fortunately,
the storm's path did not directly impact Florida as many had predicted,
but two days of heavy rain, flooding and high winds still caused
oFor Hurricane Sandy, FPL secured more than 100 additional line workers
from partner utilities in Florida, who joined the company's restoration
effort along the entire east coast of Florida.
FPL Provided Mutual Assistance Twice During 2012
Through the Southeast Electric Exchange, FPL offers mutual assistance to other
utilities once the company is assured that customers in its service territory
are no longer at risk of being impacted by a tropical system.
FPL provided mutual assistance twice to the northeast in 2012:
oSuper Derecho, July 2012 -- FPL sent 135 workers to Maryland to help
restore power following the Super Derecho storm that impacted several
oHurricane Sandy, October 2012 -- FPL deployed nearly 1,000 employees and
contractors – including material handlers and operations & logistics
professionals – along with bucket trucks, tankers, fuel pumper trucks and
other equipment to assist 11 utilities from Virginia to New Jersey to
restore power and rebuild their electric systems following Sandy.
"We are committed to doing everything we can to help fellow utilities and
their customers in their time of need, and we are grateful to receive
assistance when we need it.The concept of mutual assistance is very important
to our industry," said Silagy.
FPL continues to focus on storm resiliency
In the 20 years since Hurricane Andrew, FPL has invested to make its systems
more resilient to storms, utilized significant technological advances,
improved how crews and resources are positioned, and made its emergency
response organization more efficient to help restoration efforts. In addition,
there are many tools and technologies that FPL uses today that didn't exist in
the early '90s including improved weather information, Global Positioning
Systems, restoration spatial view and infrared technology.
Technology advancements allow FPL to inform customers about restoration
efforts faster after a storm.For example, hours after a storm, FPL creates a
preliminary restoration estimate using computer modeling based on historical
data. The estimate will change as damage reports from the field are complete,
but it's intended to help customers and communities make initial plans.
In addition, at the start of the 2012 storm season, FPL opened the
state-of-the-art Category-5-rated FPL Command Center in Riviera Beach, Fla.,
that is the brain center of the company's restoration and logistics planning
for its 35-county service territory.
Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest electric utility in Florida and
one of the largest rate-regulated utilities in the United States. FPL serves
approximately 4.6 million customer accounts and is a leading Florida employer
with approximately 10,000 employees. The company consistently outperforms
national averages for service reliability while its typical residential
customer bills, based on data available in December 2011, are about 25 percent
below the national average. A clean energy leader, FPL has one of the lowest
emissions profiles and one of the leading energy efficiency programs among
utilities nationwide. FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Fla.-based NextEra
Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE). For more information, visit www.FPL.com.
SOURCE Florida Power & Light Company
Contact: Florida Power & Light Co., Media Line: +1-305-552-3888
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