HALIFAX – Nova Scotia Power is activating its Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) at 8 p.m. tonight, (March 12) in advance of a major winter storm.
“Weather forecasts are calling for heavy, wet snowfall and high winds, beginning on Tuesday into the early morning hours on Wednesday,” said Matt Drover, Nova Scotia Power’s storm lead.
“In preparation, we’re positioning powerline crews and forestry teams across the province, and we’re staffing up our Customer Care Centre. We continue to closely monitor weather forecasts, and in the meantime we are beginning to stage crews throughout the province so that we can respond to customers as quickly as possible.”
The EOC provides centralized co-ordination for outage restoration planning and response, as well as liaison with the Nova Scotia Emergency Management Office (EMO). It is staffed with employees representing all aspects of the company.
“We will be ready to begin restoration efforts as soon as it is safe to do so,” Drover said. “Based on the current track, we expect this storm to cause power outages across the province. The forecasted blowing and drifting snow may make travel difficult, and could impede crews in early response to outages. We encourage people to monitor their local weather forecasts and make preparations accordingly.”
Nova Scotia Power is also proactively coordinating with electrical inspectors to streamline the repair process for customers who may incur damage to their meter mast as a result of the storm. If a customer’s electrical equipment is damaged, customers need a certified electrician to make repairs before Nova Scotia Power can safely restore power.
Nova Scotia Power encourages customers to plan for their safety. Some tips include having an emergency kit that includes flashlights, a battery-powered radio and fresh water, ensuring backup generators are installed properly outdoors, and charging electronic devices. If you lose power, turn off and unplug electrical equipment, such as televisions and computers to prevent damage when power is restored. Visit www.nspower.ca/stormready for a full list of safety and storm preparedness tips.
In situations where there are multiple power outages, Nova Scotia Power restores power in phases to ensure critical services like hospitals can stay open before beginning work in other areas. Larger outages on transmission lines and in substations are restored ahead of smaller outages to restore electricity to the greatest number of customers. The phases are as follows:
Phase 1 – Restoration of public safety issues and emergency situations
Phase 2 – Restoration of NS Power critical infrastructure such as transmission lines and substations
Phase 3 – Restoration of Emergency Management Office (EMO) critical infrastructure such as hospitals, shelters, and essential provincial and municipal services
Phase 4 – Restoration of main electrical feeders servicing communities and neighbourhoods
Phase 5 – Restoration of branch power lines servicing individual streets
Phase 6 – Restoration of individual homes and businesses