Clay Electric announces Hurricane Ian will impact company’s service areas

Zoey Fields

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Clay Electric shared this photo of Hurricane Ian's potential path to their Facebook page, urging residents to have a plan in case of danger.Clay Electric Co-Op

Hurricane Ian will impact most, if not all, of Clay Electric’s service territory with winds and heavy rain reaching the area as early as Wednesday, Sept. 28, the company announced on their Facebook Page.

The co-op suggests everyone keep an eye on the projected path and make their own plans.

According to the National Weather Service, tropical storm and/or hurricane conditions are possible Thursday and Friday. Several watches and warnings have already been issued by the weather service.

“Power outages are likely due to the forecast, and members should plan to be without power for an extended period of time,” Clay Electric’s Communications Specialist Laurel Ring said. “Since Friday, Clay Electric has been reviewing inventory of materials and bringing them up to necessary levels if widespread power outages occur. Their Fleet Service Department has also made sure that the company’s gas supply is at adequate levels and all vehicles are fueled.”

Clay Electric General Manager/CEO Ricky Davis will attend Clay County’s Tuesday, Sept. 27 press conference at 2:30 p.m. to speak about the company’s plans for the storm, County Public Information Officer Annaleasa Winter said.

Click here to be taken to Clay County’s Emergency Management page where the press conference will be live-streamed.

Davis has met with Chief Operations Officer Bryan Gunter to begin the process of bringing in outside crews to help Clay restore service if Ian causes extensive outages in the co-op’s service area, Ring said.

The only accounts receiving preferential, or faster, treatment are those which are described as "Essential Service" accounts, Ring said. They are related to community safety, health and welfare and include hospitals, police buildings, fire stations, communications and water areas and sanitary and transportation providers. These accounts are often referred to as “priority accounts.”

“These steps are to ensure we remain ahead of the curve because this storm’s projected path will affect multiple utilities, causing outside resources to be limited,” Davis said. “With potential statewide damages, and knowing other states may be in Hurricane Ian’s path, we want to be proactive in securing the necessary resources to restore power to our members as efficiently and safely as possible.”

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