COLUMBUS, Ohio, Jan. 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) and its utility subsidiaries were honored today by the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) for their efforts to restore power and assist other electric utilities in restoring power following two severe weather events in 2012. EEI is the association of shareholder-owned electric utility companies.
AEP Ohio, Appalachian Power, Indiana Michigan Power and Kentucky Power received EEI's Emergency Recovery Award for their response to the June 29 super derecho storm, which crossed the eastern United States with heavy rain, hail and hurricane-force winds. Electric utilities experienced more than 4.3 million customers without power in 10 states and the District of Columbia, including the 1.4 million AEP customers affected at the storm's peak.
In addition, AEP was honored with EEI's Emergency Assistance Award for the efforts of more than 2,600 of the company's employees and contractors who assisted other utilities following Hurricane Sandy in October. During the restoration effort, approximately 50 percent of AEP's company and contract line resources were working to help restore power for other utilities. AEP crews primarily worked in New York, New Jersey and West Virginia.
"We are so proud of the extraordinary efforts of our crews and support personnel in getting the lights back on quickly and safely following these destructive weather events," said Robert P. Powers, AEP executive vice president and chief operating officer. "Some of the crews were away from home for weeks assisting other utility companies. The sacrifices our employees and contractors made and their commitment to customers were remarkable, but not surprising. Our employees have a long legacy of doing whatever is necessary to get power back on when major weather events interrupt service."American Electric Power is one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity to more than 5 million customers in 11 states. AEP ranks among the nation's largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP also owns the nation's largest electricity transmission system, a nearly 39,000-mile network that includes more 765-kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined. AEP's transmission system directly or indirectly serves about 10 percent of the electricity demand in the Eastern Interconnection, the interconnected transmission system that covers 38 eastern and central U.S. states and eastern Canada, and approximately 11 percent of the electricity demand in ERCOT, the transmission system that covers much of Texas. AEP's utility units operate as AEP Ohio, AEP Texas, Appalachian Power (in Virginia and West Virginia), AEP Appalachian Power (in Tennessee), Indiana Michigan Power, Kentucky Power, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, and Southwestern Electric Power Company (in Arkansas, Louisiana and east Texas). AEP's headquarters are in Columbus, Ohio. SOURCE American Electric Power