Sparks will fly at Duke Energy’s first responders storm season training

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  • Live line demo prepares first responders for hurricane season

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Duke Energy linemen will teach first responders about power line safety in anticipation of the upcoming hurricane season June 1 through Nov. 30.

On May 18, 2016, the linemen will use energized lines to demonstrate how outages occur and what it takes to restore power.

The first responders will also learn the essentials of power line safety as the demonstration will feature lines just like the ones in most neighborhoods.

For years, Duke Energy has focused on storm safety and live line demonstrations for first responders, large business customers and elected officials.

In the last year-and-a-half, the company put on more than two dozen storm preparation sessions and downed power-line demonstrations, reaching more than 1,300 emergency personnel across Duke Energy’s Florida service territory.

"At Duke Energy safety always comes first. This type of training keeps our first responders safe. Working in the utility business in Florida, we know it’s when not if a hurricane will hit our state," said Alex Glenn, Duke Energy state president – Florida.

"Since the 2004 hurricanes, Duke Energy Florida has invested nearly $1.4 billion to harden our system against storms, including trimming trees and replacing power poles,” Glenn added.

Duke Energy Florida also made significant investments in grid automation that will further improve service reliability through storm season and beyond.

Automated wireless sensing devices connected with other technology now help create an intelligent power deliver system that reduces both the length and number of outages.

When outages occur for any reason, Duke Energy is committed to restoring power as safely and quickly as possible, while keeping customers informed throughout the process.

Outage alerts are available by text or voice message and feature restoration times, status updates, outage causes and notification when power is restored. Starting June 18, customers can also request emailed outage alerts.

Following the 2004 Florida hurricanes, Duke Energy Florida was honored by the Edison Electric Institute, a trade group made up of utilities, for the best storm response during that unprecedented hurricane season.

Duke Energy Florida and its predecessor companies have been recognized five times for its outstanding storm response -- and enterprisewide the company has been recognized 16 times.

Duke Energy Florida maintains its own hurricane plan and is ready to respond – with the strength of thousands of additional crews and contractors from our Duke Energy utilities in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and the Carolinas. The company recently held a week-long drill to simulate response to a hurricane impacting the company’s Florida territory.

Media are invited to attend the live line presentation on May 18, at 8:30 a.m. at the St. Petersburg Operations Center, located at 2501 25th St. North in St. Petersburg.

Customers are encouraged to develop their own hurricane plans and prepare in advance of the season:

Safety tips

  • Create (or update) an emergency supply kit to save valuable time later. The kit should include everything an individual or family would need for at least two weeks, especially medicines and other supplies that might be hard to find after a storm strikes.
  • Maintain a supply of water and non-perishable food.
  • Ensure first-aid supplies and medicines are readily available. If electricity is needed to operate medical equipment, contact Duke Energy (800-700-8744) in advance of a storm to learn what to do in the event of a power outage or emergency.
  • Review insurance policies, and include extra copies of the policies and other important documents in the emergency supply kit (ideally in a waterproof container).
  • Keep flashlights on hand, ensure they’re operational, and maintain a supply of extra batteries.
  • Keep a portable radio or TV, or NOAA weather radio on hand to monitor weather forecasts and official information.
  • Maintain a plan to move family members – especially those with special needs – to a safe, alternate location in case an extended power outage occurs or evacuation is required. Pet owners can make arrangements to stay at evacuation shelters that accept pets, friends’ or family members’ homes, or pet-friendly hotels.

For a “Hurricane Kit Checklist,” important safety tips and more information on what to do before, during and after a storm, visit, then click “Outage & Storm Information” under Duke Energy Florida.

For storm or power restoration updates in the event of a hurricane, follow Duke Energy on Twitter (@DukeEnergy) and Facebook (Duke Energy).

Text “REG” to 57801 to use our outage alerts service. You will need to have your account number off your bill or have your mobile number registered with your account.

About Duke Energy Florida

Duke Energy Florida owns coal-fired and natural gas generation providing about 9,100 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 1.7 million customers in a 13,000-square-mile service area.

With its Florida regional headquarters located in St. Petersburg, Fla., Duke Energy is one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 7.4 million electric customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest, representing a population of approximately 24 million people. Its Commercial Portfolio and International business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a S&P 100 Stock Index company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at

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