Let’s check in on power restoration for Florida’s west coast

From the lieutenant governor on Wednesday night:

Considering that they couldn’t start driving into the affected areas until the hurricane eye had moved well northeast, the 42,000 linemen, linewomen, and line-non-binary-people have had essentially one full day to work. How much have they accomplished? Florida started off with at least 2.7 million customers (about 5 million people when you consider household size and subtract businesses?) without power according to poweroutage.us. A state agency published a similar number:

What’s https://poweroutage.us/area/state/florida showing now?

Also, here’s Governor DeSantis’s 9 am briefing:

Can he win an Emmy for these or is he not as good as Andrew Cuomo? (I never had the privilege to see Cuomo’s Emmy-winning briefings.)

Finally, how about making a documentary film of these linemen, linewomen, and line-non-binary-people restoring Florida’s grid? So as not to delay their important work, have a 27-year-old interview them during meal breaks and ask, with outstretched palm, “Biden is going to force you to pay for most of my gender studies degree, but would you mind voluntarily kicking in for the rest?” Generally speaking, linepeople learn via a paid on-the-job apprenticeship rather than by sitting in a classroom. However, if we can find a few among the 42,000 who did complete a college degree, that would be even better for our video. A lineperson could explain how his/her/zir/their Critical Race Theory major and Gender Studies minor were invaluable prep for working on the 50 kV lines. Another could explain how the psych degree was helpful when configuring a Toshiba GRT200 transformer protection relay.

21 thoughts on “Let’s check in on power restoration for Florida’s west coast

  1. Let me answer my own question… as of 8:14 pm, 1.496 million customers are out (i.e., 1.2 million have been restored).

  2. Looks like work slows down in the dark. Or maybe the easy fixes have already been made. As of 12:23 am, 1.367 million customers out. Minimal progress compared to 2 hours earlier. (Maybe not “minimal” if you’re one of those who got restored!)

  3. 2:04 pm Saturday: 1.195 million customers out. Not too much relief for Lee County, with 358,000 out of 488,000 customers out.

  4. > Finally, how about making a documentary film of these linemen, linewomen, and line-non-binary-people restoring Florida’s grid?

    That would be appropriate and epic! I’d love to see that. It shouldn’t be all *that* hard to put together nowadays that everyone has a decent video camera in their phone. It would remind me a little me of this NYC guy from EATER.com who visited a Louisiana rice+crawfish farm and worked as a crawfisherperson for a day. I genuinely enjoyed this video – he’s a good sport, and it is indeed cool how the farm works. His name is Daniel Geneen and here’s his brief bio:


    “Hi! I’m a New York-based media person and comedian. I spend most of my time making videos and podcasts for Eater.com and with whatever is leftover I perform jokes for five people in the snow.”

    So this NY comedian goes to Louisiana and actually does a pretty good job (at least as the video is edited) catching crawfish. It’s a good thing for him, I suppose, that you can’t eat high voltage electricity direct from the lines. Lol.


    I keep thinking of words like: “rectifier” and so forth, so with a little reluctance, I’m gonna resist the urge to amplify or ground that. Back to the gri[n]d!

  5. 10:13 pm: Down below 1 million! 966,000 customers are out. That’s 300,000 restored compared to this morning. Lee County still has 321,000 out (compare to 358,000 at 2 pm). An FPL executive said that this was on track to be the fastest power restoration in U.S. history.

  6. Tampa dodged another one! My parents in the north part of Tampa didn’t lose electricity and only had some small branches and lots of leaves fall. Fort Myers got the brunt of it.
    This is a yearly thing in Florida so get used to it!

  7. I hope that by the time one week has elapsed, more people in Florida who suffered a direct hit from a hurricane have their power restored than the fraction of people in MA who were hit by a snowstorm in my area (where it was out for a week) about eight years ago. In MA, we expect snowstorms. In Florida, to some extent, they expect hurricanes. Let’s see who does a better job overall.

    So far, 2/3rds of the power has been restored, so they can take all those workers and concentrate them on the remaining outages. There are probably some pockets that won’t have power for a couple of weeks because of really heavy damage.

    Here’s a map as of right now:

    Customers Tracked: 11,136,842
    Customers Out: 835,903
    Last Updated: 2022-10-02 09:23:36 AM


    • “bucket bunnies” throwback to dated term “file bunnies” for female employees in an office with large file cabinets? Bosses supposedly chased the file bunnies around the stacks???

  8. My Florida collaborators did not skip a bit and felt offended when I asked about hurricane Ian.
    They were in the original predicted path but just got strong wind and rain.

  9. Sunday, 6:33 pm: Unfortunately, it looks as though the low-hanging fruit has been plucked by the army of bucket trucks. Not a whole lot of progress compared to previous days. 741,000 customers are out state-wide; 302,000 in Lee County. Volusia County in northeast Florida (Daytona Beach) is looking like a tough case as well, with 55,000 customers out.

    • Monday afternoon — steady progress. Certainly impressive compared to deplorable track record of PEPCO in DC area for the 20 years we were at their mercy (natural monopolies are a thing!)

      from same website: Customers Tracked: 11,125,244
      Customers Out: 583,342
      Last Updated: 2022-10-03 02:33:45 PM

  10. Tuesday, noon: Volusia County is almost completely restored. Presumably a lot of those NE Florida linemen, linewomen, and line-non-binary-people are now in or headed to SW Florida, but their efforts are no doubt frustratingly slow for people near where Hurricane Ian made landfall. Still 427,000 customers out.

  11. Thursday, 7:04 pm: 165,195 customers out. How soon before they get to the barrier islands where houses were completely washed away and the addresses cannot realistically be considered potential “customers” for at least 1-2 years?

  12. Tuesday, 4:44 pm: 8,773 customers still out. This is pretty close to the likely number of customers on a handful of barrier islands, e.g., Sanibel, that were trashed. So essentially everyone that could be reached by a utility truck driving from one of the staging yards that the Florida state government and utilities had set up prior to the hurricane. This is the day that the Florida Department of Transportation folks were able to reopen road access to Sanibel and utility workers are already driving across the bridge. https://floridapolitics.com/archives/563265-gov-desantis-sanibel-causeway-reopening-for-emergency-workers-civilian-traffic-resumes-oct-24/

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