Mississippi Power’s storm team is monitoring the track of Category 5 Hurricane Irma, making preliminary preparations in case crews are needed with projected landfalls in Florida on Sunday and South Carolina Monday evening.
Irma, with sustained winds of 185 mph, continues to track west-northwest but a turn northward is forecast by the end of the week, according to the National Hurricane Center. The timing of that turn to the north will determine which area could see catastrophic damage from wind, storm surge and heavy rain.
The forecast cone has the potential for the storm to enter the eastern Gulf of Mexico, but currently, it is not expected to have any impact on South Mississippi.
“The storm still has a long way to go, but we’ve started getting a storm team roster together so we will be ready to move if we get the call to provide restoration assistance,” said Engineering Services Manager Scott Cashwell.
Mississippi Power is a member of the Southeast Electric Exchange’s Mutual Assistance Program, which allows utilities affected by significant weather events to receive restoration assistance from utilities that were not impacted.
The size and strength of Irma is not the only sign that activity in the tropics is intensifying. Tropical Storms Katia and Jose are also being tracked. Katia, located in the southwestern gulf, is forecast to go into Mexico while Jose is forecast to become a hurricane but not affect the U.S., turning north into the Atlantic.
Mississippi Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), produces safe, reliable and environmentally responsible energy for nearly 187,000 customers in 23 southeast Mississippi counties. Mississippi Power ranked first in the Southeastern Electric Exchange’s 2016 Safety Performance Reports and is consistently recognized as an industry leader in reliability, customer service and safety. Visit our websites at www.mississippipower.com and www.mississippipowernews.com, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube.