UPDATE: Officials with the Southwest Power Pool say rolling blackouts have been suspended. They say after performing some shutoffs across their area, they were able to “restore adequate generation” to allow them to revert back to a Level 2 emergency.
They say the threat of outages is not yet over. As the cold weather continues and the strain on the power grid remains high, they may have to do another round of shutoffs.
LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - The Southwest Power Pool, which manages the power grid for 17 central and western sates, including Oklahoma, declared an Energy Emergency Alert Level 3 Monday morning.
The organization says that after exhausting their available reserve energy, they’re now directing their member utilities to perform controlled interruptions of service to prevent widespread uncontrolled power outages.
Local power companies are asking customers to be prepared for the possibility of outages in their area.
Stephens County officials say that rolling outages will take place periodically and it won’t just be residential areas, but traffic lights and other infrastructure as well. The Stephens County Fairgrounds will be open as a warming station, though officials are urging citizens to shelter in place if possible.
PSO was requested to initiate planned outages for some customers, but put the request on hold and restored power to all customers. They warn though that should another temporary interruption of power be required, customers should be prepared to be without power for approximately two hours. They are asking customers to help by conserving energy as best as possible.
OG&E says that the outages will likely continue over the next few of days and is also urging customers to conserve energy.
ONCOR had originally planned for controlled outages of 15 to 45 minutes, but has since extended that period of time to possible hours. They say they are also responding to separate outages caused by the winter storm.
Cotton Electric Cooperative is asking customers to be prepared for short outages over the next couple of days while also battling several large outages affecting more than 1,000 members in the southern part of our service area.
The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management has put out a statement regarding the possible outages.
Residents in areas that may experience an interruption of service are urged to be prepared as their energy company may not have advanced notice of the outage.
They’re also being encouraged to conserve energy by not running any unnecessary appliances, such as washer and dryers, to turn off lights that are not in use, unplug small appliances, and turn thermostats to 68 degrees.