Clay Electric Cooperative has initiated its Emergency Operations Plan due to the anticipated amount of damage that may occur as Hurricane Matthew passes to the east of the cooperative’s 14-county service area. This ensures that all cooperative personnel are focused on preparing for the storm and restoring service once it’s safe to do so.
“Our members need to be prepared to experience extended power outages due to the severe weather and gusty winds that will spread across our service area beginning later this evening,” said Communications Manager Wayne Mattox.
Clay Electric’s six district offices will be closed Friday, October 7, to allow Clay personnel to focus on preparations and restoration efforts.
The cooperative has requested an additional 100 line personnel to assist with restoration efforts. This is in addition to 290 outside line personnel and right-of-way contract personnel that have already been requested.
Clay Electric’s major restoration effort will get underway at 6 a.m. on Saturday, as outside crews and Clay’s crews begin assessment and restoration efforts. Clay personnel will respond to scattered outages Thursday and Friday as long as it's safe to do so.
For members who are dependent on electrically-powered medical devices, they should make plans to have an alternate supply of power available.
Members who plan to use portable generators during an outage are cautioned to use care in operating the units, and not operate them in an enclosed space due to dangerous exhaust fumes. Portable generators should never be connected to a home’s internal circuits because that can create a dangerous back-feed situation that could get a lineman or neighbor killed or seriously injured.
To report an outage, members are encouraged to go to Clay Electric’s website. Members can report an outage by calling 888-434-9844, but this line may be busy due to the high volume of calls expected.
A Power Outage map is available on the cooperative’s website which shows the number of outages by county and district.