Georgia Power receives emergency response award

Georgia Power’s preparedness and ability to restore power so quickly after last January’s severe ice storms were recognized by the rest of the electric utility industry today when the company received an Edison Electric Institute (EEI) Emergency Response Award.

EEI’s Emergency Response Award recognizes companies for outstanding efforts to restore customer service knocked out by extreme weather conditions or other natural events.

“This is wonderful recognition of the hard work, dedication and expertise of our employees,” said Georgia Power President and CEO David Ratcliffe, who accepted the award at an EEI board of directors meeting in Tucson.

It was nearly a year ago that a double-hit of severe ice storms left more than 364,000 Georgia Power customers without electricity and affected 23,625 miles of transmission and distribution lines -about 45 percent of the company’s system.

Georgia Power’s response to the challenge of Ice Storm 2000 was quick and effective. The electric utility, mobilizing more than 2,000 line and support personnel, immediately went to work repairing its system and within two days had restored power to 93 percent of its affected customers.

“Our employees worked long hours in extreme conditions to restore power to our customers as quickly as possible,” said Ratcliffe. “We cannot control adverse weather, but we are always prepared to work hard to minimize its impact on service to our customers.”

The Edison Electric Institute is the association of United States investor-owned electric utilities and industry affiliates and associates worldwide. Its domestic members generate approximately three-quarters of all the electricity generated by electric utilities in the country and service about 70 percent of all ultimate customers.

Georgia Power is the largest subsidiary of Southern Company, the nation’s largest generator of electricity. The company is an investor-owned, tax-paying utility, serving customers in 57,000 of the state’s 59,000 square miles. Georgia Power’s rates are more than 15 percent below the national average and its 1.8 million customers are in all but six of Georgia’s 159 counties.