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Going gets tough … but tougher FPL workers punching through

Going gets tough … but tougher FPL workers punching through

by | Sep 15, 2017 | 5 comments

Once again, I had the opportunity to spend all day on the road with our crews, beginning in the northern region of our service territory at St. Augustine, then onto Daytona and finally Melbourne.

The damage from Hurricane Irma is consistent with what we’ve been seeing in other parts of our service territory. Many of the communities we serve are located along the coasts, and these places bore the brunt of a slow-moving hurricane with powerful winds and flooding.

As we go neighborhood by neighborhood, we continue to see that fallen trees have pulled down power lines, whole trees and other debris are blocking roads, and flooding has left some areas impassable.

The force of Mother Nature is not to be underestimated. That was never more evident than at one of our job sites in South Ponte Vedra Beach in St. Johns County. Irma made her presence known when the roof of a home adjacent to the ocean literally ripped away and landed in our lines.

In other parts of our service territory like Coral Gables, where the community is full of large trees off of our right-of-way, we are working with state and local authorities, including the Florida Department of Transportation, to help us clear roads so our crews can do their jobs. Even with help, we’re still facing an uphill battle in the hardest-hit areas because of these unexpected, on-the-ground challenges. This is frustrating for our crews, but know that they’re working tirelessly to get into these areas and get the lights on.

Also today, I continued to meet with public officials to help them understand what our field forces are up against so that they’re better prepared to respond to their constituents.

Our crews also are seeing brutal – and potentially dangerous – conditions in the field. We put safety above everything else here at FPL, so I’d like to ask for your support in helping our crews work as safely as possible. Sadly, one of our contractors was injured recently by a vehicle that did not move over. Please remember that Florida law requires drivers to move over and slow down whenever there is a utility worker on the side of the road.  Lives depend on this – I thank you in advance for moving over to keep workers along the road safe.

At the same time, I want to urge you to make safety your first priority as well. Stay far away from downed power lines and please, keep generators well away from your home to prevent fumes from entering.

Thank you for your patience, and please know that we’re doing all we can to help your lives return to normal as quickly as possible.

About The Author

Eric Silagy

As president and CEO of Florida Power & Light Company, Eric Silagy leads the thousands of employees who bring affordable, reliable power to you every day. He's raising his family here in the sunshine state, something that fuels his drive to always look for ways to make tomorrow better for all of us.


  1. I just want. To thank you for all the hard work and time that you put into restoring my power. I know that I felt aggravated that it wasn’t getting turned back on right away but I do know that everyone their was working very hard and still working very hard to get everyone up and running. So again I thank you very much for all the hard work and time to restore my power thank you. It was out for a week but I was so greatful to have it fixed.

  2. I just want to say thank you to you and your team the grid improvement did help I was up back up within 2 days after power went out. Being a cancer fighter right now and living alone in a condo I worried about my health but growing up Midwestern and around a farm new about survival. I have been thru many hurricanes and tornadoes. Andrew, Wilma that destroyed my condo and now Irma but no damage just power out.
    People who are criticizing you have not been thru a disaster or forgotten. With every storm those of us been thru it have learned lessons. I was displaced for 4 years during Wilma so forget about power then it didn’t matter. But with FEMA grant money when they rebuilt my condo they had to be brought back up to code. I have hurricane impact windows they did great this time. Our city after Wilma had the concrete poles installed not like the toothpick woods ones in Pembroke Pines the fault lies with the cities who did not learn nor upgrade to hurricane code shame on them not you guys. I can’t even fathom Marathon Key allowing trailers in a hurricane zone sorry and feel for those people losing their homes. But as I have learned it’s just stuff I have survived and will fight this battle too with my cancer.
    So again Thank You and ignore the critics your team was spotted staged at sawgrass mall by my mom just like they were during Wilma. And to be able to get power almost all restored except for down poles in a week when those people don’t realize thru Andrew was months or a year is incredible.
    We are facing 2 mores storms hopefully God spares us all.
    God Bless and again many Thanks


  4. Why haven’t I seen a single FPL tagged vehicle in Lee County? The status app is a joke – merely propaganda to try to keep people happy. “In progress” should mean someone is on site.

    • Hi Kevin,

      We are receiving support from utilities and other companies from nearly 30 states and Canada. So while you might not see an FPL truck on your street or in your neighborhood during a power outage, you may see our partners from other companies who are part of our restoration team.

      Regarding the “in progress” status, we’ve been working 24/7 to restore power by fixing damaged equipment and uncovering new damage as we push to get your lights back on. This damage may not be visible to you because our crews may be working on issues from multiple locations.

      We understand how challenging it is to be without power, and I want to assure you that every FPL employee is dedicated to getting the lights back on safely and as quickly as possible.


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