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FERC Back in Business After Power Outage

After two days of being in the dark, power was restored to the Washington, DC, headquarters of FERC, allowing it to reopen its doors Friday, the agency said.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission buildings opened for business at 8 a.m. EDT. "All employees are expected to report for duty at their regular time but no earlier than 8 a.m.," FERC said on its website. "Employees may experience interruptions in [information technology] and communications services."

FERC lost power at about 4 p.m. EDT last Tuesday when underground cables serving the area failed (see Daily GPI, June 2). Pepco, which provides electric service to the District and Maryland, said it had laid temporary cables above ground in order to expedite service restoration. With the temporary work completed, the utility said crews will begin working on permanent repairs to the underground cable network. This work is expected to take several days.

Because of the outage, FERC said any filings that were due Tuesday (May 31) through Thursday (June 2) would be considered timely if filed Friday (June 3).

The outage was attributed to heavy air conditioning load stemming from high summer temperatures, which have neared 100 degrees.

Ironically, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, the FERC-certified electricity reliability organization, just released a summer reliability assessment for the nation, which concluded that the bulk power system would be able to meet the electricity demands this summer.

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