Insights > Entergy Arkansas winter storm update – 1/31/23, 12:30 p.m.
Entergy Arkansas winter storm update – 1/31/23, 12:30 p.m.
The first of multiple rounds of winter precipitation moved through Arkansas overnight bringing freezing rain and ice accumulations and causing more than 7,500 customer outages at peak this morning, with most concentrated in the northeast part of the state. Currently we are down to approximately 1,400 outages.
We are closely monitoring the weather, as the next bout of freezing rain is entering the state this afternoon and will continue through the day, producing significant ice accumulations of up to a quarter-inch in many areas and up to one-half inch in some.
We have crews supplied and equipped to respond to outages as quickly and safely as possible in all areas. Additional resources have been called in to assist with restoration, including scouts, vegetation crews, electricians, track equipment and more.
Today, the heaviest ice accumulations will be primarily across the center of the state and eastward toward Mississippi, including the southeastern region. The ice accumulations will likely cause widespread power outages and additional hazardous travel conditions, making for treacherous driving and potentially slowing restoration efforts.
Extra weight on power lines caused by ice can cause them to fall or stretch, possibly causing power interruptions. While Entergy Arkansas manages growth of trees and bushes near electrical equipment, one half-inch of ice can increase the weight of a tree limb as much as 30 times, causing limbs to bend or snap, falling onto power lines and causing an outage.
Galloping of lines, which has already been reported in some areas, can also cause outages. Galloping occurs when rain freezes to the power lines, and then steady winds cause adjacent lines to move and sometimes contact one another.
For preparation tips and cold weather updates, visit www.entergy.com/cold.
WINTER WEATHER RESTORATION PROCESS
As the winter storm impacts Arkansas, we will deploy scouts to assess damage in all affected areas. It is on these assessments that we base our estimated restoration times. We will communicate these estimates with you, updating as new information becomes available. Our crews will simultaneously be restoring service where it is deemed safe to do so. We ask for your patience, and please know restoring your power safely and quickly is our top priority.
Please be aware the restoration process can be hampered by the surge of instantaneous electrical demand from appliances (heating units, water heaters, etc.) when service is restored to your location, potentially overloading protective devices on Entergy’s electrical system. To help mitigate this problem, Entergy encourages you to turn off any electrical heaters or electrical appliances that can easily be turned off until power is restored.
As with any weather event, please be mindful of the following safety tips:
- Live wires can be deadly. Stay away from downed power lines. Call 1-800-9OUTAGE or 1-800-968-8243 to report downed or dangling power lines, damaged or downed poles or other damaged equipment.
- Do not trim trees or remove debris on or near downed power lines. Only power company crews or their contractors should remove trees or limbs touching power lines. Again, stay away from downed power lines.
- Keep away from the immediate areas where crews are working. There is always the danger of moving equipment and the possibility of construction materials, limbs or overhead wires falling to the ground.
- If you plan on using a generator for temporary power, get a licensed electrician and disconnect from the utility electric system before hooking up to your main electric panel.
- Do not run a generator in a confined space without adequate ventilation. Use them only outdoors, following all manufacturers’ safety guidelines.
- Turn off any electrical appliances that can easily be turned to the off position until power is restored.
- Check on seniors, who can be particularly susceptible to extreme temperatures.
- Try to stay off the roads in affected areas. More traffic in bad weather leads to more accidents, including more injuries and fatalities as well as accidents that can damage electrical poles and other equipment, creating outages and impeding the ability of crews to access and repair damage and slowing restoration.
We want to keep you informed and in control. The best way to get information about outages is via Entergy’s View Outage page on our website. Additional resources for your convenience:
- Download our app for your smartphone at entergy.com/app or visit Entergy Storm Center to stay informed on our restoration progress.
- Sign up for text alerts. From your cellphone, text R E G to 368374, or visit entergytext.com.
- Follow us on Facebook and on Twitter @EntergyARK.
- Follow updates in your local news media, like radio, television, and newspapers.