RECORD-BREAKING FLOODING LEAVES THOUSANDS WITHOUT POWER
Sam Houston Electric Cooperative is no stranger to inclement weather. From ice storms to Hurricanes Rita and Ike, the Cooperative’s service territory has seen it all. That is, until Hurricane Harvey parked over the Cooperative’s service territory for days, delivering unprecedented amounts of rain.
Co-op crews repaired outages to 47,000 meters—many of which experienced multiple outages over the duration of the storm. For days Cooperative line technicians and 150 contractor personnel repaired outages only to be faced with more wind, trees fallingand floodwaters rising even higher.
Throughout five days of torrential rains and for several daysafter, crews worked to restore power to tens of thousands of Co-op members. Many were in areas that were inaccessible due to flooding. As Harvey made its way out of the Co-op’s electrical distribution system, extensive flooding began along the Trinity and Neches rivers, driving some members from their homes.
The Co-op soon encountered another challenge when its transmission provider, Entergy, experienced a large-scale outage affecting more than 8,000 members. Our crews assisted Entergy in locating and repairing the problem.
After a large area has been without power for an extended period, it must be energized in smaller sections. This helps balance the load and voltage to our members. While Co-op engineering and operations staff were energizing the areas affected by the Entergy outage, a substation transformer went down, requiring crews to work into the early morning hours replacing the transformer and restoring power to members.
Concern for Community is one of the Cooperative’s principles, but during Hurricane Harvey, our community was just as concerned about us. Local teachers, families and church groups made snack bags and breakfasts to keep employees going.
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