Moye said the company also is increasing the use of helicopter patrols, which are an effective way to identify downed lines in rural areas.
Appalachian Power also is trying to make its lines more resilient against smaller storms. That could mean widening rights-of-ways around power lines in some areas, adding devices to the lines that allow power to switch from one cable to another and trimming trees around the lines, Moye said.
Most outages affect small areas. In the event of larger, widespread outages, Moye said Appalachian Power is looking to "improve the scalability" of restoration efforts.
To put it simply, it's one thing to bring 100 linemen into an area. Hauling thousands of workers into an area is another task altogether.
Moye said the Appalachian Power is working with people outside the company to secure staging areas where crews can work and make arrangements for lodging. Last year, the company used university dorm rooms to house linemen.
"We're trying to have better arrangements in place," he said.
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