Repairs have been completed to 19 of the 20 substations knocked out of service by Hurricane Laura. Crews continue to repair power lines that deliver electricity from those substations to homes and businesses across Central Louisiana.
As of 7 p.m. Thursday, 21,000 customers remained without service.
“We are installing a 1-megawatt generator as an alternate source of power for a substation near Leesville – the last substation serving SWEPCO customers that was damaged by the hurricane,” said Drew Seidel, SWEPCO vice president of Distribution Region Operations. “As we’ve worked to repair the substations, hundreds of line crews continue to rebuild the power lines fed by the substations.”
Approximately 1,100 poles were damaged or broken by Hurricane Laura, Seidel said. Replacing utility poles is some of the most time-consuming work in storm restoration.
“It may take a crew working safely and quickly five hours to replace a single pole,” Seidel said. “Repair work takes longer if a tree crew needs to cut trees away from downed lines or the broken pole is difficult to access – across standing water or mired in mud.”
Crews add cross-arms, insulators and other hardware to the poles, install transformers in some locations, and get the conductors back up in the air. Throughout the process, workers focus on safety, especially regarding lines that may be energized.
“With the magnitude of this storm, we are working as safely and quickly as possible in hundreds of locations to replace poles and other equipment to restore power to our customers,” Seidel said.
Estimated Times of Restoration
SWEPCO has provided details on estimated times of restoration for communities in the Natchitoches area. More localized information for communities in the Hornbeck area will be provided when available.
Estimates are for 95% of customers who can take power. Many customers will be restored sooner.
Hornbeck and surrounding communities:
10 p.m. Sunday (more detailed information to come)
10 p.m. Friday – Hagewood Hwy 6 to Hwy 504 Oak Grove community
10 p.m. Saturday – Hwy 120 Provencal and east to Cypress
10 p.m. Sunday – Provencal and south on Hwy. 117 to Belwood; Hagewood Hwy. 6 to Robeline
10 p.m. Saturday – Hwy. 471 Verda to Atlanta, La; Verda Hwy. 471 and Hwy 122 to Dry Prong
10 p.m. Sunday – Verda Hwy 122 to Montgomery
10 p.m. Thursday – Derry La Hwy 1 north to Cypress, La
10 p.m. Friday – Derry La Hwy. 119 to Melrose
10 p.m. Saturday – Derry La Hwy. 1 south to Marco
10 p.m. Friday – Many Marthaville Rd
10 p.m. Sunday – Many Hwy 6 runs east to Robeline Ft. Jessup area
10 p.m. Thursday – Marthaville Hwy 487 to Ajax
10 p.m. Saturday – Marthaville Hwy. 120 to Robeline; Marthaville Hwy 120 to Natchitoches Parish/Sabine Parish line
Cane River –
10 p.m. Saturday- Hwy. 1 south to Natchez and Hwy 1 bypass to I-49
Grand Ecore –
10 p.m. Thursday – Hwy 6 at Grand Ecore and Hwy. 3191 Oak Grove community
10 p.m. Sunday – Hwy. 6 west of Grand Ecore and Clarence community, St. Maurice, Montgomery
10 p.m. Friday – Campti Hwy 71 south to Clarence
10 p.m. Saturday – Campti Hwy. 71 north to Fairview; Campti Hwy. 480 east to Sandy Point
10 p.m. Thursday – Belmont Hwy. 175 south to Many and Hwy 175 north to Pleasant Hill
10 p.m. Thursday – Creston Hwy. 9 to Campti, Bells Camp community
10 p.m. Saturday – Colfax Hwy 492 to Rock Hill community, Meade Rd
Approximately 21,000 customers remain without power in eight Central Louisiana parishes, including 12,800 in the Hornbeck area, 7,300 in the Natchitoches area and 900 in the Mansfield area.
SWEPCO has restored power to 21,000 Central Louisiana customers. At the peak after the hurricane, 42,000 customer were without power in Bienville, DeSoto, Grant, Natchitoches, Red River, Sabine, Vernon and Winn parishes.
For all of SWEPCO, power has been restored to 115,000 customers, or about 85%, of those without power after Hurricane Laura struck SWEPCO’s service area as a Category 2 storm on Thursday, Aug. 27.