Entergy: Equipment woes cause of Wednesday power outage

Annual maintenance also contributing factor

Almost 30,000 Entergy customers were without power for a few hours Wednesday night, but power has been restored and all systems are operating properly, an Entergy spokesman said.

There were a number of factors contributing to last night’s power outage in the Baton Rouge area, Entergy spokesman Will Johnson said.

The company was performing annual maintenance procedures on the power system that make it difficult to redirect power to other areas, Johnson said.

“We do these in the spring, because that’s when temperatures are lower and the demand for power is less,” he said. “This annual maintenance is done as part of our preparations for hurricane season.”

Johnson added that a generator responsible for supplying power to the Baton Rouge area unexpectedly quit operating.

“That caused an equipment failure that interrupted power to a major high-voltage transmission line that provides service to those customers affected by the outage,” Johnson said.

“Our repairs to the affected equipment have been successful, and the problem has been eliminated at this time,” Johnson said. “No more major outages are expected to occur because of yesterday’s conditions.”

-------

Nearly 30,000 Entergy customers in the Baton Rouge area lost power for a few hours Wednesday night due to an equipment failure.

It wasn’t clear Wednesday night where the failure happened or what caused it, but an Entergy spokesman said the company will provide more details once it completes its investigation into the outages.

More than 28,000 Entergy customers and about 700 DEMCO customers in the parish lost power Wednesday night at about 8 p.m., although it wasn’t clear if the outages for each company were related.

The equipment failure killed power from about 8 p.m. to shortly before 10:30 p.m. for several thousand Entergy customers in a large swath of north Baton Rouge north of Winbourne Avenue and between Plank Road and Airline Highway. It also blacked out thousands more in the Goodwood area and in an area southeast of the intersection of Siegen Lane and Airline Highway during the same time frame, according to an outage map on Entergy’s website.

Will Johnson, the Entergy spokesman, said the company on Thursday likely would be able to provide more detailed information about the “root cause” for the outages.

A spokesman for Demco said about 700 of its customers who live in the northwest part of East Baton Rouge Parish and some who live in East Feliciana Parish were without power for about an hour Wednesday night. But power was restored for those customers within an hour, said David Latona, the spokesman.

Prior to the return of power for the Entergy customers, Latona said he did not know why the Demco customers temporarily lost power. He also said he didn’t know whether it was related to the Entergy outages. Demco crews were working Wednesday night to determine the cause of its outages.

Cpl. Don Coppola Jr., a Baton Rouge police spokesman, said there were “no reports of any issues resulting from the power outages” around the city.