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How Nova Scotia Power geared up for Dorian

Nova Scotia Power crews were kept busy across the island Monday as high winds and rain caused a number of outages, including along Yorke Street in Sydney.
Nova Scotia Power crews will begin to restore outages from Dorian as soon as weather conditions are safe for them to work, the utility says. - Saltwire Network / File

Nova Scotia Power activated its emergency operations centre Friday ahead of the arrival of hurricane Dorian.

“The EOC is the nerve centre for outage restoration planning and response and is staffed with employees representing all aspects of the company,” NSP said in a news release. “Nova Scotia Power will operate its EOC until the last customer is safely restored.”

The utility plans to bring in several hundred power line technicians from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Quebec,” said Karen Hutt, president & CEO of Nova Scotia Power.

“As well, we will have forestry crews, planners, damage assessors, engineers, supervisors, communication experts, and customer care representatives at the ready. Teams will be staged over the course of the day on Friday across the province to ensure we can mobilize our response as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Crews will begin restoring power as soon as conditions are safe, the release said. When winds are gusting above 80 km/h, they will make on-site safety assessments on whether it’s safe to work.

NSP advised customers to monitor local weather forecasts, have an emergency kit on hand that includes flashlights, a battery-powered radio and fresh water, and to charge electronic devices.

“If you lose power, turn off and unplug electrical equipment, such as televisions and computers to prevent damage when power is restored.”

More information is available at iwww.nspower.ca/stormready.

Environment Canada issued a hurricane watch advisory Friday that said there’s a slight possibility that Dorian could bring near-hurricane conditions.

But whatever category the storm falls into when it peaks Saturday, damaging winds and heavy rainfall are in the forecast.

The RCMP also put out a warning ahead of Dorian on Friday morning.

“As the storm approaches, it is important to remember that extreme weather will result in hazardous conditions, decreased visibility and possible hydro-planing on our roads and highways,” the release said. “Drivers may also encounter wind-blown debris on the road and sudden flooding, which can be dangerous for motorists and detrimental to highway conditions.”

People should not travel unless necessary to keep the roads clear for emergency and storm-response vehicles.

The RCMP also urged people to stay well away from the shoreline.

“Storm-driven waves and tides can cause unpredictable and deadly conditions, as anyone close to the coast could be swept into the ocean.”

Halifax Stanfield Airport issued a tweet Friday morning warning the storm could cause flight delays, cancellations and schedule changes over the weekend.

“We’re working closely with our airline partners to understand potential impacts on operations, & we’re securing airport equipment as required,” the airport said in the tweet. “We encourage passengers to confirm their flight status with their airline. For airline contact info, visit this link: https://bit.ly/2Gzu9Ui.”

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