JUNO BEACH, Fla. – Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) has restored service to essentially all customers along Florida’s west coast and within the central and north regions who were affected by Tropical Storm Eta. While customers experienced approximately 70,000 outages after Eta made landfall north of Tampa, preliminary estimates show the company’s smart grid technology helped avoid more than 22,000 outages and accelerate the restoration. FPL’s investments to build a stronger, smarter and more storm-resilient energy grid is helping reduce outages and enabling faster restoration for customers following severe weather.
“Our dedicated men and women made tremendous progress working through severe bands of weather as Eta made landfall on Florida’s west coast,” said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL. “Our restoration workforce of approximately 9,000 quickly pivoted as the storm’s track shifted. They mobilized and followed the storm north after wrapping up the restoration in South Florida. We greatly appreciate the support from our industry partners, local law enforcement, first responders and state and local officials for their help in our response to this unpredictable storm.”
The leading cause of outages from Eta was trees and other vegetation blowing into or falling onto FPL equipment, as well as severe flooding. Crews must cut away the downed vegetation before they are able to safely assess damage and restore power and floodwaters must recede before crews can safely access equipment.
Customers should contact FPL at 1-800-4-OUTAGE if their neighbors have power, but they are still experiencing an outage. Please avoid standing water and debris.
Genese Augustin, FPL distribution drone coordinator who has been with the company for more than 15 years, helps direct drone pilots to the hardest-hit areas after a storm impacts our service area.
“It's incredible how our company's storm response efforts have evolved since the historic 2004-2005 hurricane season,” said Augustin. “We're now using state-of-the-art technology to get a bird's eye view of areas that were previously inaccessible just hours after the storm has passed. This was especially helpful during Eta in inaccessible flooded areas. Drones provide valuable insight and help us get the lights back on faster for customers.”
By the numbers
- Approximately 70,000 customers restored during our second response to Eta.
- Peak number of outages was 14,000 at any given time during the storm.
- Smart grid technology helped avoid more than 22,000 outages.
- The average customer was restored in just under two and a half hours.
- More than 25 drone teams helped survey damage and speed restoration.
Customers can download the FPL app for on-the-go, instant and secure access to their accounts. Customers can report or get the latest information on an outage. The app is available for download in the iOS App Store and Google Play. To quickly download the FPL app, text the word “App” to MyFPL (69375).
How to stay informed
FPL communicates restoration information to customers frequently through the news media and the following resources:
Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest energy company in the United States as measured by retail electricity produced and sold, serving more than 5.1 million customer accounts or an estimated 10 million+ people across the state of Florida. FPL’s typical 1,000-kWh residential customer bill is approximately 30% lower than the latest national average and among the lowest in the U.S. FPL’s service reliability is better than 99.98%, and its highly fuel-efficient power plant fleet is one of the cleanest among all electric companies nationwide. The company was recognized in 2020 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Escalent for the seventh consecutive year. A leading Florida employer with approximately 8,900 employees, FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, and has been ranked No. 1 in the electric and gas utilities industry in Fortune’s 2020 list of “World’s Most Admired Companies.” NextEra Energy is also the parent company of Gulf Power Company, which serves approximately 470,000 customers in eight counties throughout northwest Florida, and NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun and a world leader in battery storage. For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit these websites: www.NextEraEnergy.com, www.FPL.com, www.GulfPower.com, www.NextEraEnergyResources.com