FirstEnergy utility personnel are prepared to respond to outages caused by the high winds and thunderstorms forecast for the eastern U.S. beginning later today through Thursday.
Company meteorologists are monitoring a powerful storm system that is expected to produce severe thunderstorms and sustained high winds gusting in excess of 50 mph in FirstEnergy's Ohio utility service areas later tonight and the remaining areas in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Maryland and New Jersey into Thursday.
FirstEnergy utilities include: Ohio Edison, The Illuminating Company and Toledo Edison in Ohio; Metropolitan Edison Company (Met-Ed), Pennsylvania Electric Company (Penelec), Pennsylvania Power (Penn Power), and West Penn Power in Pennsylvania; Mon Power in West Virginia; Potomac Edison in Maryland; and Jersey Central Power & Light in New Jersey.
All of FirstEnergy's 10 electric utilities are holding conference calls to review storm response plans, which could include staffing additional dispatchers and analysts at regional dispatch offices, along with making arrangements to bring in additional line, substation and forestry personnel, as required, based on the severity of the weather. In addition, FirstEnergy has been in contact with contractors and electric industry mutual assistance organizations about the possibility of assisting with storm restoration efforts.
"We are monitoring the weather conditions closely and are making plans to deploy resources to the areas that could get hit the hardest," said Mark Julian, vice president, Utility Operations, FirstEnergy. "The ultimate goal of our pre-planning efforts is to speed the restoration process and minimize any inconvenience our customers experience due to the weather."