Georgia Power reported in a press release this afternoon that power has been restored to nearly 675,000 customers, and they repeated their earlier estimate that power would be restored to 95 percent of affected customers by Sunday evening.
The press release is reprinted below:
Georgia Power continues damage assessment and restoration efforts and has already restored electric service to nearly 675,000 customers following Hurricane Zeta. As of 1 p.m. Friday, approximately 180,000 customers are without power across Georgia. The company expects power to be restored to 95% of customers impacted by Hurricane Zeta by Sunday night, and the company is working as safely and quickly as possible to restore power to customers.
Based on the impact of Hurricane Zeta across the Southeast and other storm activity in the country, the availability of additional resources from other utilities to assist with restoration efforts in Georgia is limited. The company will continue updating regional restoration estimates as often as possible and as additional resources from other utilities are secured. Currently, the company has secured resources from 14 states and Canada to support restoration efforts.
Damage from Hurricane Zeta is similar to the damage seen after Hurricane Michael impacted the state in 2018. As Hurricane Zeta crossed through the state, Georgia Power’s service territory experienced wind gusts of up to 75 mph for more than two hours, along with sustained winds of 25-40 mph for more than five hours straight. As damage assessment continues, damage reports include more than 350 broken poles, 120 damaged transformers and 1,600 spans of wire down. Teams continue experiencing challenges including downed trees and roads blocked that must be cleared to enter certain areas.
While the company continues to assess damage, customers in the hardest hit areas should plan ahead for the potential of extended outages, possibly days, due to the vast damage from the storm.
Restoration progress since the beginning of the storm has been largely possible thanks to Georgia’s advanced electric grid, which allows the company to reroute and restore power even when weather conditions prevent work in the field, as well as early work of crews. All of Georgia Power’s teams are in the field today working to assess damage and restore power.
In the field, the power restoration process includes these key steps:
- Assessing Conditions – Responding crews – or in major storms, damage assessment teams – work to identify trouble spots and the resources needed to fix them, which could involve coming onto customers’ property. Crews will employ appropriate distancing efforts and customers are asked to keep children and pets indoors and maintain safe distances from crew members as well.
- Making Repairs – Georgia Power crews focus on repairs that return power to the greatest number of customers in the least amount of time.
Damage Update – As of 1 p.m. Friday
- Power has been restored to nearly 675,000 Georgia Power customers across the state.
- There are approximately 180,000 Georgia Power customers currently without power.
- Approximately 4,000 cases of individual damage or trouble.
- Damage and outages are widespread and across much of the state.
The company encourages customers to keep safety first following Hurricane Zeta:
- Watch for downed wires. Downed power lines may be hidden by debris or fallen trees.
- Never touch any downed wire or attempt to remove tree branches from power lines – it can kill.
- Don’t step in standing water or saturated ground where downed lines may be present. They could be electrified.
- Avoid chain link fences. They may be electrified by a downed line out of sight and conduct electricity over great distances.
- Watch for Georgia Power crews working across the state. If driving, move over one lane for utility vehicles stopped on the side of the road – it’s the law in Georgia.