Atlantic City Electric Ordered Improvements After Storm Response Review

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MILLVILLE - The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities Board received the staff’s report on the review of the electric companies’ preparation and response to the June 23
severe storm.
The storm produced a macroburst with strong straight-line wind gusts that caused over 400,000 electrical outages predominately in Atlantic City Electric (ACE) and Public Service Electric and
Gas (PSE&G) territories in southern New Jersey. In response to staff’s findings, the Board ordered a total of five improvements in the areas of internal and external communications and the establishment of timely and accurate Estimated Times of Restoration (ETR).
Staff’s review focused primarily on ACE’s response since the company’s infrastructure suffered the brunt of the storm’s impact and the company’s situational awareness and implementation of
its storm response plan were hampered by Verizon’s wireless service outage, which negatively impacted the company’s storm damage assessment efforts, establishment of ETRs and
communications with customers, local officials, media outlets and the BPU.
“While much was accomplished by ACE in mobilizing and augmenting its regular workforce with a substantial number of mutual aid crews, more work is needed to accomplish a satisfactory level of performance in the areas of communications and the establishment of accurate ETRs,” said Richard S. Mroz, President of the N.J. Board of Public Utilities. “Today’s Board ordered
improvements deal with issues impacting ACE’s internal and external communications and the establishment of accurate ETRs.”
The unusual weather event known as a “bow echo,” produced winds in excess of 85 mph that struck the state causing massive damage to the transmission and distribution systems of both ACE and PSE&G. It also knocked out Verizon wireless service in areas of southern New Jersey. The majority of storm damage was concentrated in ACE’s territory causing extended outages for more than 259,000 customers. Mroz visited the affected area several times immediately after the storm to assess the power outages and worked with local officials and the power companies on the restoration of service.
The “Bow Echo” Weather Event Report can be found here: http://nj.gov/bpu/pdf/reports/ACE_Restoration_Report_june23_storm_8_28_15.pdf
To learn more about the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, visit their website, www.nj.gov/bpu. http://www.bpu.state.nj.us.

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