Entergy reports twice as many power outages this year than last year

Entergy reports twice as many power outages this year than last year

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Some Baton Rouge residents may receive calls saying crews will be in the neighborhood cutting down trees around power lines.

Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, who is running for governor, has asked for an investigation into Entergy.

"Folks are saying my power is out. It's gone out now eight times, nine times, 12 times, 13 times in certain areas," said Angelle.

Angelle said his office has received 48 complaints in nearly a three-week period, 35 of those were outage related.

"There have always been problems, but the frequency and duration of outages has greatly increased in the last years," one resident stated in their complaint.

Another resident said, "It has now gotten to a state where Entergy has allowed this area to be like a third world country.

Entergy reports they have had a 51 percent increase in the number of power outages in the first half of 2015, compared to the first six months of 2014.

Tom peters with Entergy said the April 27th storm and nearly daily rain for weeks has made matters worse this year.

"Rain has soaked the ground and wind comes along and blows the trees over, and also causes limbs to give up that are rotting or decaying," said Peters.

It's particular neighborhoods that have the most outages, not all of Baton Rouge. For example, Plantation Trace, Southdowns, some neighborhoods along Highland Rd. and even the Garden District, but Peters said the massive oak trees where power lines literally run through the middle of them, are protected and cannot be cut down.

Entergy reports 71 percent of the outages this year are vegetation related, from trees falling. Entergy says every four years they cut the vegetation, but this year they cutting the vegetation on some grids earlier than originally scheduled. Highland Road is one of the areas that has been moved up.

Angelle said a meeting is scheduled for next week with Entergy to discuss solutions to fix the problem, specifically how often trees are cut down.

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