Hurricane Irma cut energy to scarcely two-thirds of Florida’s electricity customers

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Hurricane Irma struck Florida on Sep 10, 2017, and knocked out energy to 6.7 million electricity customers—64% of all patron accounts in a state—according to reports gathered by the Florida Division of Emergency Management. About 100,000 business (1% of a state total) remained though energy as of Sep 19.

Image credit: U.S. Energy Information Administration

The count of business reflects a series of billed accounts or particular meters. The series of people influenced by energy outages is incomparable than a business influenced given some-more than one chairman might be lonesome by a singular electric bill. Hurricane Irma also knocked out energy to during slightest 1.3 million business in Georgia and tighten to half a million business in other states, though scarcely all hurricane-related outages in states other than Florida have given been resolved.

Hurricane Irma followed a western seashore of Florida after initial creation landfall in a continental United States in a Florida Keys. Irma was a initial vital whirly to strike Florida given Hurricane Wilma in 2005. Wilma was a Category 3 whirly with identical energy to Irma when it done landfall in a United States during roughly accurately a indicate of Irma’s second landfall nearby Marco Island.

Image credit: U.S. Energy Information Administration

Power outages in Florida rose solemnly on Sep 10, though they increasing fast overnight as Hurricane Irma trafficked adult a state. About 15% of business were though energy during noon on Sep 10, and energy outages appearance during 3:00 p.m. on Sep 11, inspiring 64% of customers. In contrast, Hurricane Wilma changed fast opposite a southern partial of a state, knocking out energy to 36% of business in Florida.

Although a commission of Florida business though energy during Irma was significantly aloft than during Wilma, a rate of electric use replacement has been some-more rapid. Five days after Irma’s landfall, a share of business though energy had depressed from a rise of 64% down to 18% (a liberation rate of about 9% of business per day). Power outages during Wilma declined from 36% of business to 16% by a fifth day after landfall (an normal liberation rate of about 4% of business per day). Based on information in a U.S. Department of Energy’s conditions reports, nearly 60,000 energy association employees from a United States and Canada were concerned in replacement efforts after Hurricane Irma.

Image credit: U.S. Energy Information Administration

Since 2005, Florida Power Light and other utilities in a state have done poignant investments to urge their whirly preparedness. These utilities have upgraded electric infrastructure, including replacing wooden application poles with petrify poles. Utilities have also deployed smart grid technologies, that yield some-more timely and some-more accurate information about outages and can assistance utilities improved aim replacement efforts.

Power outages were widespread opposite a state during Hurricane Irma, though some counties were some-more influenced than others. At a tallness of a charge on Sep 11, there were 12 counties in Florida that had 90% or some-more of their electricity business though power. Power was easy to many of these business comparatively quickly. However, even one week after landfall, 4 counties in a southwestern partial of a state had energy outages that influenced some-more than 20% of electric customers.

After a whirly done landfall, direct for electricity during a early hours of Sep 11 fell to 7.2 gigawatts (GW), that is 64% reduce than a energy direct during a same hours in 2016. By a afternoon of Friday, Sep 15, energy direct in Florida had risen to 38.1 GW, tighten to a turn of direct during a same week final year.

Hurricane Irma also influenced Florida’s dual chief energy plants, that are among a largest energy plants in a state. One reactor during the Turkey Point nuclear energy plant in south Florida was close down as a prevision before a whirly arrived. The other chief reactor during a plant was after close down given of a automatic issue. The St. Lucie nuclear energy plant remained operating, nonetheless during reduced levels. All of Florida’s reactors had safely returned to full power by Sep 18.

Source: EIA

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