Beginning at 6 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 8, more than 150 Clay Electric Cooperative personnel, along with help from nearly 500 construction and right-of-way personnel from other cooperatives and outside contractors, will begin a major effort to restore service to members that were impacted by Hurricane Matthew.
“We’ll have a small army of construction personnel helping us get the power back on beginning on Saturday,” said Wayne Mattox, communications manager for Clay Electric.
“Some of our members need to be prepared for extended power outages that may last several days due to the severity of the damage expected from Hurricane Matthew,” Mattox said.
Clay Electric Cooperative personnel will continue to respond to scattered outages today (Friday, Oct. 7) as long as weather conditions allow. As the hurricane nears Northeast Florida this afternoon and weather conditions deteriorate, the co-op will cease restoration efforts for the safety of its crews.
Prior to the storm nearing the Florida coastline on Thursday, Oct. 6, Clay Electric requested help from other cooperatives and contractors to help with restoration efforts.
A total of 360 construction personnel and 120 right-of-way personnel will join forces with more than 150 Clay Electric employees to begin damage assessments and restoration efforts Saturday morning.
Because some outages may last several days, those members who are dependent on electrically-powered medical devices should 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 backfeed 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 at http://outagereport.clayelectric.com. 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 at http://outagemap.clayelectric.com which shows the number of outages by county and district.