LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- With a wintry mix of snow and ice expected to arrive in some parts of the state tonight, Entergy Arkansas, Inc. crews have spent the better part of this week preparing to mobilize ahead of the winter storm.
Forecasts call for up to 1/4-inch accumulation of ice and up to 6 inches of snow in the northeast parts of the state. Damage becomes likely when ice reaches 3/8-inch in accumulation. Colder weather and more moisture than predicted could make things worse.
Entergy Arkansas workers have laid in supplies, topped off fuel tanks and, in some cases, packed to be on the road for several days.
Including Entergy Arkansas linemen, base load contractors, vegetation workers and support staff, the company has 725 workers ready to respond as needed. The degree to which extra help will be deployed will be determined as the extent of the threat of the storm becomes clearer.
Journeyman Lineman Tim Mitchell loading up on supplies at the West Markham Service Center in Little Rock Thursday morning.
"Getting small amounts of ice and snow typically impede transportation, but are not necessarily a serious threat to the electrical grid," said Brady Aldy, vice president of customer service for Entergy Arkansas. "When you combine them with the high winds, there is a greater risk of damage. We encourage our customers and our employees to be prepared for a variety of possible scenarios."
Where to get info
Customers are encouraged to download Entergy’s mobile app at http://entergyapp.com/ to access outage maps and information. In addition, storm-preparedness tips and online services are available to customers through "Entergy Storm Center", "MyAccount", and "View Outages". Through myAccount, customers can sign up to send and receive text information about power outages at their homes and businesses through their cellphones. Registration is easy.
Please be mindful of the following:
· Live wires can be deadly. Stay away from downed power lines. Call 1-800-9OUTAGE (1-800-968-8243) to report downed or dangling power lines, poles or other damaged equipment.
· Don’t trim trees or remove debris on or near downed power lines. Only power company crews or their contractors should remove trees or limbs touching power lines.
· Keep away from the immediate areas where crews are working. There is always the danger of moving equipment and the possibility of construction materials or limbs or overhead wires falling to the ground.
· If you plan on using a generator for temporary power, get a licensed electrician and disconnect from the utility electric system before hooking up to your home main electric panel.
· Do not run a generator in a confined space without adequate ventilation.
· Don't use candles or other flammable devices to warm your home.
·Check on seniors, who can be particularly susceptible to extreme temperatures.
· Try to stay off the roads. More traffic in bad weather leads to more accidents, including more injuries and fatalities as well as accidents that can damage electrical poles and other equipment, creating outages and impeding crews’ ability to access and repair damage and slowing restoration.
Entergy Arkansas provides electricity to approximately 700,000 customers in 63 counties. Entergy Arkansas is a subsidiary of Entergy Corporation, an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including nearly 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power, making it one of the nation’s leading nuclear generators. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $12 billion and approximately 13,000 employees.
More information is available on Entergy’s website at entergy-arkansas.com