For many, early June marks the precursor to summer, filled with graduations, BBQs, boating and more. And whether you’re gearing up for beach season or celebrating the end of the school year, it’s important to remember that this season can also bring some fierce weather.
June 1 is the official start of hurricane season and it’s predicted to be a busy one. But don’t let the threat of a storm rain on your parade. Here at PSEG Long Island, we’ve been working hard to improve our infrastructure and expand the ways we communicate with our customers to ensure reliability and timely information during a hurricane or any wild weather event.
WHAT WE’RE DOING:
In May, we partnered with representatives from the Long Island Power Authority, the New York Department of Public Service and various town leaders for our annual hurricane preparedness drill. The day-long exercise replicated a collective response to a hurricane, and covered all aspects of safety, logistics and communicating with the public. And in the fourth year since Superstorm Sandy, the drill continues to remind us how important it is to coordinate with all municipalities. The drill also gave us an opportunity to showcase our Mobile Command Center, a hub of technology set up in heavily damaged areas during large-scale emergencies and outages. The Command Center features Wi-Fi, televisions with satellite display newsfeeds, work stations and more to help our crews work faster and more efficiently.
Dave Daly, our president and chief operating officer, stressed the importance of communication at a May 31 press conference along with Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone ;Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano, Long Island Red Cross Interim CEO Liz Barker; and Bob DeMarinis, vice president of maintenance and construction New York’s Gas National Grid, saying:
“With regard to being ready for storms, we have made a number of enhancements, starting with technology enhancements that will allow us first and foremost to communicate more effectively with elected officials, with local communities and with our customers,” he said.
“As the county executives have both mentioned, communications during these events are absolutely critical. Technology will also help us to communicate more effective, efficiently, particularly when we bring in thousands of crews during a storm such as Superstorm Sandy, to dispatch and deploy those crews in a more effective and efficient manner and keep them productive.”
PSEG Long Island has also taken big steps to bolster our system for storms, spending more than $500 million on equipment upgrades in just two years. We’ve put in a new substation in South Manor to help the growing need for electricity in Brookhaven; expanded the Amagansett substation in East Hampton to mitigate voltage risks; and have installed a new transmission cable between East Garden City and Meadowbrook substations to maintain reliable service to Nassau University Medical Center and the surrounding area, among other major projects.
Similarly, we’re continuing our storm hardening program, funded by FEMA, to strengthen the main-line primary wires that were most damaged by Hurricane Irene and Superstorm Sandy. This also includes tree removal, strengthening the poles, and installing stronger and more resilient wires.
To see what we’re doing in and around your neighborhood, visit our Current Initiatives section.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
While PSEG Long Island continues to prepare for whatever the summer weather may bring, we encourage you to do the same. Start by registering for MyAlerts – a quick and easy way to report power outages and receive status updates by text. Simply text REG to PSEGLI (773454). Also, take the time now to bookmark our mobile-friendly Outage Center.
Here are a few other suggestions for how to get ready for a storm:
- Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for up-to-date information on outages, restoration, etc.
- Charge cell phones, tablets and other devices
- Compile a list of emergency phone numbers, including our Emergency Outage line at 1-800-490-0075 and our Customer Service number, 1-800-490-0025
- Fill up your car’s fuel tank
- Make sure to have cash available
- Create an emergency communication plan
- Discuss storm prep and safety with your family