GAHANNA, Ohio –Through our continuing rebuilding efforts, AEP Ohio has restored power to approximately 94 percent of the approximately 660,000 customers affected by the catastrophic storm that moved through the state June 29 and the additional customers who lost power in subsequent storms July 4 and 5.
As of 8 p.m. tonight, power has been restored to approximately 620,000 of the customers affected by these storms. Approximately 40,000 AEP Ohio customers remain without power tonight.
As the hot weather continues customers are reminded they should continue to check up on their family and neighbors still without power to make sure they are safe. If an emergency health situation arises, the public should call 911.
Restoration continues to proceed well, and we anticipate 95 percent of our customers affected by last Friday's storm will have their service restored by 11:59 p.m. Saturday.
The majority of the customers still without power are located in the central and southeastern Ohio Columbus, Newark and Athens service areas. These areas include Athens, Fairfield, Franklin, Guernsey, Hocking, Jackson, Knox, Licking, Meigs, Muskingum, Perry and Washington counties.
Approximately 11,000 remain without power across the Athens service area, with the largest block of customers still out in Athens County; approximately 4,800 across the Columbus service area primarily in Franklin County; and 22,000 across the Newark territory, primarily in Guernsey, Licking and Muskingum Counties.
Approximately 683 transmission poles were damaged across Ohio, including 443 wood poles that were downed between Van Wert and Ottawa in western Ohio. An additional 35 poles had to be replaced across the state.
These structures are the base support for the transmission line circuits that traverse the state. At the peak of the storms, approximately 128 transmissions circuits -- primarily 69-kV and high-voltage 138-kV lines -- were knocked out of service due to trees, downed lines and equipment and extensive damage to structures. Approximately 9 remain out of service.
These transmission lines feed power to substations that provide power to communities and neighborhoods. Service to approximately 306 substations was interrupted by these line outages. Tonight, service has been restored to all but three co-op stations in northwest Ohio.
As crews finish work in one area, they are being shifted to help in other areas still being restored.
Restoration in the Athens area is still in primary restoration mode, during which crews restore groups of customers and leave the area. After all primary lines that serve larger groups of customers are restored, crews return to restore service to smaller groups and individuals. More than 540 line personnel are working in the Athens area today.
AEP Ohio reminds customers that service cannot be restored to customers' homes or businesses with damaged service drops or meter
boxes. Customers must have damaged connections repaired by a qualified electrician to ensure their home can accept service when crews arrive to make repairs.
Restoration in the Columbus and Newark areasis now in the neighborhood mode. Crews are staying within the neighborhood, first restoring the main lines that feed the neighborhood and then moving on to smaller groups and individuals. This requires crews to move from one work site to the next before coming back to restore single customers. AEP Ohio is committed to getting the entire neighborhood restored before moving to a new area.
An additional 100 line workers were deployed to the Newark area today, increasing total line resources there to approximately 500. In Columbus, additional available resources also are working in neighborhoods still affected by the storms.
Additional assessors also have been deployed to work the wires down tickets. We also are calling back customers who reported wires down to determine if a hazard situation still exists. At the peak of these storms AEP Ohio had more than 11,500 wires down reports. This afternoon, almost 4,500 hazard tickets remain active.
To view how AEP Ohio restores power, click this link.
How We Restore Power After a Storm