Duke Energy Florida prepares for tropical storms

By Dominic Ellis
As US southern states prepare for tropical storms, digital technology is providing businesses and consumers with critical information

Duke Energy Florida is urging customers to prepare for Tropical Depression Fred as the southern US prepares for more storms and hurricanes.

Company meteorologists are tracking the storm and crews are preparing to safely and quickly respond if the storm impacts Duke Energy Florida's service area.

CNN reports Tropical Storm Grace became the seventh named storm of the season on Saturday, as Tropical Depression Fred "degenerated into a tropical wave".

Earlier a tropical depression, Grace strengthened to tropical storm status about 400 miles east of the Leeward Islands in the Atlantic Ocean, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Storms could potentially strengthen and bring heavy rainfall, strong winds and localised flooding to portions of the company's service area. Additional crews will be brought in from the Carolinas if additional resources are needed to support power restoration.

"Duke Energy is ready to respond should outages occur," said Todd Fountain, Duke Energy Florida storm director. "Tropical weather events like Fred can bring wind-blown debris and flooding that can impact our infrastructure. We will continue to keep customers informed and encourage everyone to monitor this system so they can stay safe."

Climate models project that hurricane wind speed will increase by 2 to 13 percent and rainfall totals by 10 to 31 percent over the next century.

The approximately 4,000 offshore oil and natural gas rigs, 31,000 miles of pipeline, and more than 25 onshore oil refineries located in the Gulf region were built to meet the climate conditions of the past - not the current and future challenges presented by climate change.

AccuWeather recently announced its latest innovation, the AccuWeather Hurricane Tracker, available in the AccuWeather App for both iOS and Android, and online here

This new feature is easily accessible from multiple entry points throughout the app, ensuring users have access to critical information designed to immediately heighten awareness of hurricanes and tropical storms as they develop and make landfall.

"We are expecting a more active than normal hurricane season in 2021, and the AccuWeather Hurricane Tracker will give our users who want to be 'in the know' a significant advantage when preparing for and staying apprised of a storm's track, whether that storm has already made an impact or is nearing landfall," said AccuWeather's lead hurricane forecaster Dan Kottlowski.

"Awareness and readiness are key during these severe weather events, and we designed this tool  to empower people to make the best weather-related decisions as possible."

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