14-Sep-2017

Weathering the storm; being prepared makes all the difference

You don’t have to look too far to be reminded of the devastating effects that hurricanes and other severe storms can have on our communities, both small and large.

We may not be able to control Mother Nature, but we can all do our best to prepare for severe weather systems. Nova Scotia Power prepares as an essential service provider, and we encourage you to prepare too.

When a major storm is heading our way, you should always monitor local weather forecasts and restock your emergency kit to ensure you have supplies to last at least 72 hours in the event of an extended power outage. As a storm approaches, be sure to charge electronics, cell phones and battery radios, and have safe lighting options on hand such as flashlights and LED lights. 

Severe storms are frequently accompanied by battering wind and rain, so it’s important to secure the exterior of your home and trim branches that might affect electrical equipment to reduce the risk of damage to your property and outages in your neighborhood.

Gus Doiron, a Power Line Technician based out of Cape Breton, saw firsthand the destruction caused by a hurricane that hit Grand Bahama last year and the overwhelming effort required to restore basic services including electricity. As a member of the Emera family of companies, 28 Nova Scotia Power employees – including Gus – assisted our sister company in rebuilding the island’s network of power lines and poles over a six-week period last fall.

“They say to prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and we definitely saw some of the worst case scenarios in terms of equipment damage in Grand Bahama last year,” said Doiron. “We were happy to be able to help those communities get back to their daily lives and routines as quickly as possible following that incredible storm.”

At Nova Scotia Power, we are taking important steps to minimize the risk of harm to our electrical system’s strength and reliability during and after severe storms.

“We undertake a significant amount of tree trimming year-round as a preventative measure to reduce the risk of tree contacts on our equipment, which is the number one cause of system outages,” said Matt Drover, Director of Regional Operations, Nova Scotia Power. “We’re also focused on fixing trouble spots in our system that can be affected by aging equipment or areas that are continually exposed to harsh weather conditions.”

Regular equipment monitoring, maintenance and replacement are key to the success of Nova Scotia Power’s system, and are a good approach for customers at their homes as well.

Drover says: “We don’t know for sure what kind of weather is coming our way this season, but we are prepared to quickly and safely respond so that we can continue to deliver service to our customers when they need it most.”  

Info to keep close this storm season

Outage map: outagemap.nspower.ca
Outage line (report outages, downed wires): 1-877-428-6004
Outage Centre (storm preparation tips and more): www.nspower.ca/outagecentre

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OUR PEOPLE

Gus is one of our employees who goes above and beyond at work and in his community. Watch Ford Canada's recent profile of Gus as part of their Canada 150 series celebrating the people that make us proud to be Canadian.