Power Crews Still Working to Restore Electricity after Hurricane Zeta
Central Alabama Electric Cooperative says its crews continue their restoration efforts after Hurricane Zeta ripped through the co-op’s 10-county service territory Thursday morning, leaving more than 36,550 members without power.
More than 200 lineworkers are working to restore power, which includes assistance from
cooperatives and contractors from Alabama, Arkansas, Florida and Georgia. As of Sunday
morning, more than 27,000 services were restored with less than 10,000 members remaining
“We have more boots on the ground working than we have ever had to utilize before,” said
CAEC President and CEO Tom Stackhouse in a statement. “We are thankful for the assistance we’ve received and the patience that our membership has shown. In our 80-year history, we haven’t had to
face an outage event on this scale, with the closest comparison being Ivan 16 years ago, but
even then, Zeta has brought a whole different level of destruction.”
When Hurricane Ivan hit the cooperative’s territory in 2004, it left over 31,000 members out,
13,000 were caused by transmission loss to the co-op’s substations, which when repaired
within 24 hours, left 18,000 members out. Restoration took five days. Zeta stormed through the
core of CAEC’s service area with a peak outage of nearly 37,000 members and the co-op was
able to restore 24,500 of these services in three days.
Most outages were due to fallen trees, broken poles and downed lines, which were caused by
Zeta’s violent winds registering over 60 mph. Due to the widespread nature of the damage,
impacting approximately 75 percent of the co-op’s 44,000 meters, the restoration process has
taken time. Even with outside assistance and the progress made, the co-op estimates all
services may not be restored until Friday, Nov. 6.
At 11 a.m. on Nov. 1, the county by county breakdown of members without power was:
Autauga, 2,300; Bibb, 54; Chilton, 5,200; Coosa, 3,000; Dallas, 829; Elmore, 908; Lowndes, 26;
Perry, 70; Talladega, 397; and Tallapoosa, 21. For real time numbers, visit
http://outage.caec.com/ to view our outage monitor and our social media pages for updates.
— Information from Central Alabama Electric Cooperative