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Posted on: August 28, 2020

Update on Entergy

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THE WOODLANDS, TEXAS (August 28, 2020) – Officials with The Woodlands Township have been communicating consistently with Entergy officials regarding power outages experienced on Thursday, August 27, 2020 by residents and businesses in The Woodlands.

Entergy experienced significant damage to segments of their transmission lines which ultimately affected all customers including those in The Woodlands. Entergy serves the Town Center and all The Woodlands Villages in Montgomery County and a portion of residents in the Village of Sterling Ridge.

"We are communicating diligently with Entergy and their restoration efforts," said Township Chairman Gordy Bunch. "Entergy has said it does not anticipate any more periodic power outages and we look forward to seeing additional information throughout the day."

Statement from Entergy as of Noon, Friday, August 28, 2020
The storm disrupted electrical service for 291,300 Entergy Texas customers.  The Orange County and Port Arthur/Beaumont areas were heavily damaged, with significant outages extending north into Hardin County. 

Damage assessment could take up to three days. Our scouts are assessing damage to determine the exact cause of your outage and how long it will take to correct the problem.  While we are assessing damage, we will continue restoring service where it is safe to do so.  We’ll be better prepared to give an estimated time to restore your power after the full assessment is completed.  We are assessing the damage to our system caused by this storm.  We know you want your power restored and we have started the process.  As we begin restoring power to critical services, we begin to assess damage and put in place our restoration plan that will restore service to the greatest number of our customers as safely and quickly as possible.  We use advanced technology, like infrared cameras, drones and satellite imagery to assess damage by foot, vehicles, airboats, highwater vehicles and helicopters.

Our transmission system suffered significant damage as a result of Hurricane Laura and the transmission grid remains fragile.  We are working closely with MISO to ensure the stability of our system.  We currently do not anticipate rotating outages to be required, however, we are not at normal reliability levels on our system but are working to continue restoration efforts.  We want to thank our customers for their patience during a difficult time for our region.  We continue to work tirelessly to restore customers following Laura’ devastation in our area, and we are committed to doing everything we can to deliver safe, reliable service for our customers.

Around midnight last night, our reliability coordinator, MISO, cancelled its order for periodic power outages in the Entergy Texas region.  Shortly after this, Entergy Texas returned all customers who were affected by these rotating outages back in service.  We understand many of our customers were affected by these outages and how inconvenient and frustrating it can be.  In an emergency situation like this, there was no notice provided to Entergy of the pending outage and thus no way for us to inform our customers in advance of the outages.  Rest assured that these steps were only a last resort measure taken to ensure the overall stability of the electric grid.  Since yesterday, Entergy Texas continues to take steps to improve the integrity of the electric grid.

Last night, crews were able to place a high voltage power line back into service, which provides an additional connection to the power grid.  This provides another path for power to flow and improves stability into the Texas transmission grid.  In addition, we also have started up units at Sabine Station, our power plant along the Texas/Louisiana state line.  While this power plant was in the direct path of Hurricane Laura, it suffered minimal damage and crews were able to complete the start up this morning.  This adds additional generation to the Texas area that allows us to serve more load.

Given the intensity of this storm and the additional need for our crews to follow COVID-19 precautionary measures, hardest hit areas may experience longer outages.  We continue acquiring more resources for our restoration teams, with nearly 10,000 currently ready to restore service for customers whose power may be affected by Laura.  These resources include company employees, contractors and mutual aid resources and can be relocated as needed to restore service to affected customers.   Restoration workers are coming from 20 states including Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

The Township will continue to provide updates as received. Please sign up to receive notifications at www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/notifyme, or follow through the Township’s social media channels.

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