Utility companies are among those industries that keep emergency plans and business continuity plans up-to-date all the time. These plans are a big help with the pandemic that is happening.
As shelter-at-home mandates are declared, some utility workers may find that their home is at work now. The headline: U.S. power industry may ask key employees to live at work if coronavirus worsens.
Some power industry jobs just can’t be done at home.
Great River Energy cooperative which runs 10 power plants serving 1.7 million customers in Minnesota, said it is preparing for the possibility of sequestering staff essential to running its operations. It has a supply of cots and blankets ready at its main control center if it decides to keep critical workers on site to keep them healthy. That is from the news report.
The power sector started developing more detailed pandemic plans over a decade ago, in the wake of SARS and other contagious disease outbreaks, said Scott Aaronson, vice president of security and preparedness for the Edison Electric Institute, a utility trade group.
Consumers should know that utilities work together during emergencies. In a committee called the Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council (ESCC) “electric companies plan closely with other segments of the sector and with other critical infrastructure sectors – such as communications, nuclear, natural gas, transportation, and emergency services – as well as contractors and suppliers to ensure that none is compromised during a pandemic.” (Source)
While there is plenty of difficult news during this societal emergency, consumers can feel good knowing that teamwork and care for communities is a key strength among power industry employees.