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MISO declares Severe Weather Alert for region threatened by Gulf of Mexico storm

Houston — The Midcontinent Independent System Operator on Thursday declared a Severe Weather Alert for midnight Friday morning through midnight Monday morning for the areas of the central Gulf Coast threatened by a tropical depression strengthening in the Gulf of Mexico.

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The alert includes a request for deferral or cancellation of maintenance and testing of any critical transmission or generation systems in the area of Louisiana and Mississippi primarily served by utilities owned or operated by Entergy and Cleco, plus the nearby public power and electric cooperatives.

"Please be prepared if weather conditions change and significant impacts to the [Bulk Electrical System] are expected, MISO may declare Conservative System Operations," the notice states.

According to an MISO emergency operations document, noncritical maintenance of equipment is suspended "and in some cases, returned to service" when a Conservative System Operations status is declared.

"Operating personnel throughout the affected area are also in a higher state of alert," the document states.

The utilities and generators affected are:

  • Municipal power utilities at Alexandria and Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Cleco
  • Entergy's utilities in Louisiana and Mississippi
  • Louisiana Energy and Power Authority, which coordinates municipal utilities throughout the state
  • NRG Energy's Louisiana Generating facilities in New Roads, Louisiana
  • Southern Mississippi Electric Power Association

-- Mark Watson,

-- Edited by Derek Sands,