Power Outages Update: Storms Knock Out Power to 700,000 over 8 days

April 4, 2016
Heavy rain hail, and tornadoes last week caused power outages for 76,666 electric customers in the South, while snow and wind from Colorado to Ontario knocked out the lights to more than 600,000 electric customers the previous week.

Heavy rain hail, and tornadoes last week caused power outages for 76,666 electric customers in the South, while snow and wind from Colorado to Ontario knocked out the lights to more than 600,000 electric customers the previous week.

Last week’s storm in the south affected Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas, as reported by the Department of Energy’s Energy Assurance Daily. The storms occurred Thursday and Friday.

The 4-County Electric Power Association, a co-operative electric utility in Mississippi was hardest hit with 12,000 of its 47,000 customers without power due to 20 broken power poles and significant downed power lines. Murray Electric in Kentucky had 8,000 outages; Entergy Mississippi, 7,700 customer outages; and Florida Power & Light 6,390 outages, according to Energy Assurance.

Separately, in British Columbia, 10,000 BC Hydro customers lost power March 31 because of a substation fire, according to the federal agency

The previous week the outage count was far worse due to snow and wind from Colorado to Ontario. The DOE office reported 610,000 outages on March 23–24. Xcel Energy, which serves 3.5 million customers in eight western and midwestern states, was hardest hit with more than 300,000 outages. In Canada, more than 100,000 customers served by Ontario’s Hydro One lost power.

Power Outages March 23-April 1

Credit: DOE Office of Electricity Delivery & Energy Reliability

Credit: DOE Office of Electricity Delivery & Energy Reliability

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About the Author

Elisa Wood | Editor-in-Chief

Elisa Wood is an award-winning writer and editor who specializes in the energy industry. She is chief editor and co-founder of Microgrid Knowledge and serves as co-host of the publication’s popular conference series. She also co-founded RealEnergyWriters.com, where she continues to lead a team of energy writers who produce content for energy companies and advocacy organizations.

She has been writing about energy for more than two decades and is published widely. Her work can be found in prominent energy business journals as well as mainstream publications. She has been quoted by NPR, the Wall Street Journal and other notable media outlets.

“For an especially readable voice in the industry, the most consistent interpreter across these years has been the energy journalist Elisa Wood, whose Microgrid Knowledge (and conference) has aggregated more stories better than any other feed of its time,” wrote Malcolm McCullough, in the book, Downtime on the Microgrid, published by MIT Press in 2020.

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