SMECO has been working throughout the day to restore electric service to members who were affected by weather-related power outages.
According to SMECO spokesperson Tom Dennison, “At our peak on Monday afternoon at 3 p.m., we had more than 45,000 customers without power. We were able to restore service to thousands of people on Monday and had about 24,000 without power at 11:30 p.m. Some crews worked through the night and all available line workers were back on the job this morning. As of 11:15 a.m. on Tuesday, January 4, we have about 18,000 people without service.”
SMECO’s line crews, along with contractors from Sumter, Penn Line, AUI Power, and CW Wright are working to restore power in areas affected by outages. In accordance with SMECO’s power restoration policy, repairs that will restore service to the most people in the least amount of time are prioritized. Crews work to make sure substation feeders and major distribution lines are cleared of downed trees and limbs and are operational before making repairs to tap lines and individual service lines. Currently, four of SMECO’s feeders remain offline.
Dennison added, “Heavy wet snow, coupled with frigid temperatures and ice, may cause additional outages and will slow down restoration work. Most feeders have been restored, but the remaining outages will take a while to repair. In addition, for each repair we make, just a few people will have their power turned back on. Although one line may have several trees or limbs down, each incident has to be repaired individually, and making repairs to these types of incidents is time consuming.”
Anyone can view the status of SMECO power outages, find helpful information, or report an outage on the co-op’s outage map on our Outages page.