Swepco provides initial power restoration estimates

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Shreveport, La., (Aug. 28, 2020) – Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO) estimates most customers in the Shreveport-Bossier area will have power restored by 10 p.m. Wednesday, and for Central Louisiana customers by 10 p.m. Thursday.

“Hurricane Laura was unprecedented, causing widespread damage to the power grid,” said Drew Seidel, SWEPCO vice president of Region Distribution Operations. “Scattered thunderstorms forecast for today could cause new outages and hamper our progress on repairs.”

The initial estimates are for restoration to most customers in the area. Estimates by town will be provided later today and will be updated as further assessment and repair work continues. Your power may be restored sooner.

As of 9:30 a.m., about 107,000 customers were without power, including 103,000 in Louisiana.

As crews respond to hundreds of downed trees, poles and wires, SWEPCO employees also are continuing to assess the damage across Louisiana.

By this afternoon, nearly 3,000 line and tree personnel from 14 states and Canada will arrive and begin working to help SWEPCO employees restore power.

“We recognize that high heat is a challenge for the public and our crews working to restore power,” Seidel said. “Please check on your family and neighbors who are without power and who spend a lot of time alone.”

Customers without power who are on life support systems or need uninterrupted electric service for health reasons should make alternate arrangements.

Hurricane Laura smashed into SWEPCO’s Valley District Thursday morning as a Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph maximum sustained winds. It continued through northwest Louisiana and southwest Arkansas as a Category 1 hurricane and tropical storm.

At the peak, 136,000 SWEPCO customers in Louisiana and East Texas were without power.

Report outages at SWEPCO.com or through the SWEPCO app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

For updates and photos see SWEPCO.com and, follow SWEPCO on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

When to call an electrician

* SWEPCO cannot connect power to a home or business if there is damage to the service entrance, which is owned by the customer.

* Customers need to have a qualified electrician repair this damage before power can be restored. The service entrance includes the metal box housing SWEPCO’s meter, the “weatherhead” pipe on top of the meter box, the service entrance cables running from the weatherhead through the meter box to the inside panel box, and other related facilities. Similar responsibilities apply to underground service.

* After repairs are made, contact SWEPCO to have power restored.

Working safely

* Workers are practicing social distancing and other measures to stay healthy and prevent the spread of coronavirus, making the recovery effort especially challenging.

* Maintain at least six feet of physical distance between yourself and SWEPCO field personnel as we all play a crucial role in preventing the spread of coronavirus.

* Also, be careful when driving or walking in all utility crew work zones.

Photos Courtesy of AEP/Swepco by: Michelle Marcotte