Storm Response And Organized Chaos: How Can Utilities Prepare And Plan For The Unpredictable?
Mr. Lewis, who has completed more than 100 reviews of electric reliability systems and processes that include emergency response plans for major events, noted that regulators are responding in an unprecedented manner, requiring utilities to improve all aspects of their restoration practices including: readiness, communications and outage reporting, and restoration.
"A combination of people, organization, process and technology"
A robust pre-storm preparation will lay the foundation for a successful response to a major event.
According to Mr. Lewis, this preparation should focus on "people, organization, process and technology":
- P eople involves providing sufficient staffing coverage to meet the challenges, while ensuring workers are appropriately trained for safety and effectiveness
- Organization involves the appropriate mix of centralized communications and decentralized restoration, whereby the utility mobilizes multiple storm response centers across its affected service region, with adequate backups and redundancies across all levels to deal with the unexpected
- P rocess involves the effective and efficient performance of the entire operation including information flows and communications, logistic (e.g., accommodations and materials), damage assessment, packaging and prioritization of work, crew complement and dispatch, safety, and coordination of mutual aid.
- T echnology involves the systems, tools, and equipment that facilitate the efficient restoration of customers and the effective communication of accurate information to all stakeholders.
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