Compel Oklahoma Electric Companies To Improve Services

Compel Oklahoma Electric Companies To Improve Services

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Mike Douglas started this petition to Consumer Complaints Oklahoma Corporation Commission and

This is a petition to urge the electric companies of Oklahoma to put forth a plan to increase the resiliency of critical power lines to homes and businesses. The failure to provide electricity is not an uncommon occurrence as it happens in virtually every wind or ice storm more so with tornadic activity and only emphasized by the recent state wide ice storm. The impact of the last storm has had many disastrous effects including the negative impact of tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars to both residents and businesses alike. Power has remained out for many parts of the state for more than a week during record cold days and at a time when a large portion of the populace is working from home. When we needed electricity the most, it wasn't there.

Resiliency can be achieved in several ways. The first and best way is underground lines which not only make the power lines virtually invulnerable to most weather related issues but also provides shielding from radio frequency emissions which have been linked to numerous illnesses including certain cancers and leukemia. Whereas it may be fiscally unsound to bury every power line in the state, every mile buried is another mile that will not go out in a storm and not only providing power to those served by it but also freeing up repair resources for other outages. At the very least we should mandate that power lines installed going forward should all be below ground and that a long term project of burying older lines should be started immediately. It should also be noted the majority of the state has natural gas service and there is no such thing as a natural gas pole, as all natural gas service is below ground.

The second way resiliency can be achieved is by replacing wooden power poles with more durable poles made of non-degradable materials such as steel or poly. The greater portion of power poles in this state have been in place for many decades and only get replaced when they finally fail.

The third path to resiliency is redundancy. By creating multiple paths that electricity can reach its destination reduces the impact that outages have. If a power line is cut on path A to a residence or business, with minimal time a line on path B would switch over. This is common and current technology that should be implemented in much greater quantity throughout the electric grid.

Our society relies on electricity more now than it ever has in history. Without electricity we loose communication, we loose heat and air conditioning, we loose crime preventing alarm systems, we loose light. When the power goes out, especially for extended periods, we risk lives from freezing and carbon monoxide poisoning in the winter and heat stroke in the summer. People have been injured and killed with downed power lines and house fires trying to stay warm. While the power companies do prioritize hospitals we can not forget that there are many people who hospice at home with life supporting systems that can not be out for days at a time. Also important, we can not neglect the psychological damage and distress to elderly and children when left without light heat and communication. In short, we can not let the status quo go on any longer. The cycle of break and fix must be stopped, we must act now to compel our electric services to improve the infrastructure of Oklahoma and guarantee a greater quality of service.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 100!
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