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The Real Eye of the Hurricane

By May 2, 2022Blog

Crews clean up a residential street during hurricane seasonRestoration & Resource Management

Although it seems like we just got through hurricane season, 2022’s season will be upon us soon. ARCOS wants to help every utility be prepared. In this three-part blog series, we’ll address:

  • Solutions needed to make operations more efficient before and after a large event
  • How to reduce restoration costs through real-time reporting and flexibility
  • Ways to streamline FEMA and regulator reporting for a larger reimbursement

Welcome to our first installment, where we’ll cover the challenges surrounding Restoration and Resource Management.

Step One: Be Prepared

The real beginning to a project of this magnitude starts with pre-planning. Having a dynamic restoration outline in place, based on past events, is essential to organizing a rapid response.

Utilities who use ARCOS have a solid footing for crew and resource management from the get-go, using a historical record of every event that has come before. They can prepare various scenarios and workgroups ahead of time, ready in moments to ramp up or ramp down operations, making response times quicker. They know how many resources they have at their disposal, how crews were previously distributed, and what previous event time frames look like.

Secure in that historical knowledge, utilities can move on to making their pre-event plans wider in range and scope. They can expand and cover more operational tasks, like inventory procurement and increased health and safety measures. A utility no longer must construct crews on the fly during an emergency. They can be prepared ahead of time and simply adjusted, if needed, when implemented.

Proven Results: Ready Before the Storm

In the case of Hurricane Ida last year, utilities knew the storm was coming. They started using ARCOS Crew Manager days ahead of time to track and manage their teams. They seamlessly folded more than 27,000 mutual assistance and contractor crews from thirty-six states and the District of Columbia into the same system. Through ARCOS, they managed and tracked all the associated equipment and specialty tools needed to restore power, as well as every crew member’s hotel and lodging logistical data.

They were ready once Hurricane Ida made landfall and started on its destructive path. The head start created by Crew Manager, due to rosters and teams already being uploaded into the software, significantly shortened the time crews took to arrive on the scene. Pre-placed, crews were ready at staging areas spread across the hurricane ravaged area.

After initial damage assessment was completed, operators using Crew Manager sent out teams to the work that was defined as needed accomplished first. This included dispatching wire-down safety personnel, equipment, repair crews, and stage site management groups. By providing the latest data from the field and sharing it with every invested stakeholder, ARCOS Crew Manager made sure crews could safely, quickly, and efficiently re-wire and replace damaged transmission equipment. Power was restored quickly to thousands of customers.

ARCOS Service: Here for you When it Matters Most

Working with Ida-affected utility IT and Operations departments, ARCOS Support, Customer Success, Development, QA, and Product Management teams stayed online with the utility’s teams throughout the duration of the event to ensure that they had what they needed in their time of crisis. ARCOS was a part of their critical operations systems, such as OMS, WMS, GIS, SCADA, and CIS. The ARCOS teams helped support restoration processes to get power back to customers quicker.

2021 saw 17 tropical storms, seven hurricanes, and four major hurricanes. It’s impossible to know just how many will come in 2022, but we do know that destructive storms are continuing to become more severe. To respond, restore and report to the increasing frequency of devastating weather events, ARCOS Crew Manager is a must-have technology.

In our next blog, we’ll look at how ARCOS Solutions can provide the necessary reporting for storm cost reimbursement. Join us for the “The Real Eye of the Hurricane Part 2.”

Contact ARCOS to learn more about bolstering your storm response, and check out this whitepaper on how ARCOS can help increase your storm cost recovery reimbursement.

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