Hurricane Michael: EMCs already trying to ensure you don’t lose power

Cobb EMC crews work to clean up the damaged power poles from a previous storm.

Credit: John Spink

Credit: John Spink

Cobb EMC crews work to clean up the damaged power poles from a previous storm.

Electric utilities across Georgia are preparing to reduce the severity and length of power outages expected as Hurricane Michael approaches.

The Georgia EMCs, Electric Membership Cooperatives, announced Tuesday that it has moved personnel and additional contract crews to key areas, prepared trucks with emergency equipment and increased supplies of materials that would be needed.

For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.

The announcement came about the same time Tuesday as Gov. Nathan Deal declared a seven-day state of emergency for 92 counties.

“It’s still too early to tell what Michael may bring in the way of damage to Georgia,” said Harry Reeves, a vice president with Georgia EMC, “but forecasts currently are predicting high winds, heavy rain and potential flooding in some portions of the state.”

The storm is expected to intensify to a Category 3 hurricane before it lands Wednesday near the Florida Panhandle, said Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Karen Minton. She said a 12-foot storm surge there is possible.

READ | Delta, Southwest warn Hurricane Michael could disrupt flights

The Georgia EMC news release said it believes brief, isolated tornadoes are a possibility for Georgia on Wednesday and Thursday.

Kentucky, Arkansas, Virginia and Tennessee have pledged crews and equipment to help — if needed, the coooperative said.

Georgia EMC is the trade association that represents the state’s 41 electric cooperatives and others. They provide power to  4.4 million people, about half of Georgia’s population.

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Meteorologist Karen Minton has your Tuesday afternoon weather forecast.