TECO, Duke improve systems to keep power on during storms

- As agencies ready themselves for hurricane season, Tampa Electric Company and Duke Energy say they're ready for what may come. 

Both companies showed FOX 13 News how they're using new technology and existing resources to make sure power can be turned on quickly in the event its lost during a storm.

TECO showed off its new Energy Control Center, manned around the clock by dispatchers.

Tampa Electric's Ed Mora says the new technology allows them to respond quickly to power outages. Soon, customers will be able to go to TECO's website and check the status of electricity flowing to your own home.

He says that information will be particularly valuable to people who evacuate their homes during hurricanes.

"In the new outage map they can actually put in their address to see if they are back, energized or not, and the map will indicate their estimated time to restoration," Mora said. 

Duke Energy, meanwhile, is rolling out what it calls a self-healing grid.

Spokesperson Ana Gibbs says the technology automatically reroutes power around damaged lines and poles, reducing the size of power outages.

Gibbs says only about 30 percent of Duke's customers in Florida have the technology now but, within 10 years, 80 percent of its customers will benefit from the rerouting technology.

Gibbs says the company has also improved in many ways just since Hurricane Irma affected almost all of the company's customers. Duke faced backlash after their power wasn't restored by the time Duke officials promised it would be.

"We're committed to doing better for our customers and we believe our customers deserve better and we're committed to doing better for them," said Gibbs.

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