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PEC launches new outage map, preps for April 8 eclipse

The new PEC outage map is mobile-friendly and includes weather radar. It was launched on March 20 and will be part of a community education blitz in April. Courtesy image

The Pedernales Electric Cooperative launched a new online and mobile outage map for members on March 20. It also includes weather news.

“The new map updates every 10 minutes with crew status and estimated time of restoration,” Ruth Verette, PEC creative services manager, told the Board of Directors at its March 22 meeting in Johnson City. “Full-screen interface is available for both computers and mobile phones.”

Members can report outages from the website by providing a phone or account number and ZIP code. The information goes directly to outage system operators, and restoration work begins immediately. 

A publicity campaign blitz to explain the new system begins in April.

“We will focus on how to read the map, its new features, and how to report outages online,” Verette said. 

Several board members who have already tested the system sang its praises. 

“Speaking on behalf of people in my (older) age group, normally, when upgrades are made, it’s hard to adjust,” said District 1 Director Milton Rister. “This update is awesome. It’s easy to see where outages are, and I like that you have included the weather.”


In other business, directors heard an update on PEC preparations for the April 8 total solar eclipse, which will take place from mid-morning through mid-afternoon that Monday. Much of PEC’s service territory is in the direct path of the eclipse.

All PEC employees who can will be working from home on that day. Staff and crews that work in IT and power restoration will be staged throughout the service area in case of outages. 

“We are treating this like a severe weather event,” External Relations Director Caroline Tinsley Porter told the board. 

The Johnson City headquarters and district offices will be closed as will all PEC parking lots. The co-op will pause all construction work orders, AMI meter installations, and delinquency disconnects from Friday, April 5, through Wednesday, April 10.

Street lights will not be turned off for the eclipse.

“It’s a safety issue for us,” Porter said about keeping the lights on.