Florida Power & Light Co. was awarded for its innovative technology advancements, excellent customer service, and power restoration efforts at the 19th Annual ReliabilityOne™ Awards ceremony. PA Consulting (PA), the consultancy that's bringing ingenuity to life, presented the National ReliabilityOne™ Excellence Award to the utility.
"We are honored to have won the national award for best-in-nation reliability for another consecutive year,” said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL. "Winning this award four out of the last five years is unprecedented for us and reflects our employees’ commitment to deliver affordable, reliable energy to Florida Power & Lightthe more than 5 million customers we serve. The men and women of FPL have worked tirelessly since Hurricane Wilma in 2005 to build the nation’s most intelligent and reliable energy grid. Our customers are seeing the benefit: millions of interruptions avoided, faster restorations during hurricanes and severe weather, and a more than 30% increase in day-to-day service reliability over the last decade. I’m pleased that their hard work is getting the recognition it deserves.”
U.S. utilities continued to face challenging weather situations in 2018. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 2018 was the 14th warmest year on record and the 22nd consecutive warmer-than-average year for the United States. Western states experienced droughts. The destructive and deadly Camp Fire ravaged California. Hurricanes Florence and Michael made landfall in North Carolina and Florida, respectively, while earlier in the year four Nor'easters brought heavy snow and flooding to New England. Each ReliabilityOne™ award recipient had to address challenges from changing weather patterns.
This year's National ReliabilityOne™ Excellence Award recipient was able to overcome trying weather events and continue to provide resilient, reliable, and safe power grids. Florida Power & Light Company has advanced modeling and complex forecasting capabilities to understand environmental threats and accurately predict where storms would hit, they also use drones in various patrols and inspections. After the weather events, they were prepared and ready to rapidly restore power, meeting and exceeding customer expectations.
"Florida Power & Light continues to reach new levels in terms of utility reliability and power restoration efforts," said Gregg Edeson, PA Consulting's ReliabilityOne™ program drector. "They are industry leaders when it comes to serving their customers in extreme weather situations and have implemented ingenious thinking and world-class technologies to patrol lines and provide real-time analysis and diagnostics on outage calls."
Edeson adds: "While all award recipients are using disruptive technologies to improve processes and serve their customers, Florida Power & Light is on the cutting edge of introducing new technologies that address real business and customer challenges."
For 19 years, PA has been conducting reliability analyses of the nation's electric utility industry based on publicly available information on the System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI), which provides the average outage duration per customer, and System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI), which measures the average number of interruptions per customer. The indices showed a slight increase in IOU (investor-owned utility) average system outage duration by approximately four minutes in 2018 to 118.9 minutes, compared to the previous year. Key to the utility reliability trend data is PA's in-depth analysis undertaken as part of the process to identify the top performing utilities and ReliabilityOne™ award recipients. PA is proud to work with utilities that adapt and transform their technology and innovations to stand up to worsening weather conditions and achieve enduring results for their customers.
PA's certification and analyses of the utilities in the ReliabilityOne™ program found that:
- IOUs in 2018 saw a slight increase in average outage frequency compared to 2017.
- Average SAIDI performance of the Regional ReliabilityOne™ award recipients increased by approximately one minute from 2017 to 2018, but still remains over 65 minutes better than the average SAIDI performance of national IOUs.
- On average, ReliabilityOne™ participants (Regional, Midsize, and Most Improved) experienced 36% fewer sustained outages, and system outages were 48% shorter than the average U.S. IOU.
- 2018 ReliabilityOne™ participants on average saw a 3.7% decrease in SAIFI, and a decrease of 3.7% in SAIDI over the past five years. During that time, the average U.S. IOU saw an increase of 0.5% in SAIFI, and a SAIDI increase of 2.8%.
- 2018 ReliabilityOne™ regional award recipients and their customers saw a decrease of 2.7% in SAIFI, and a decrease of 1.5% in SAIDI over the last five years.
- The utilities in the Most Improved Utility category saw a 5.2% SAIFI reduction and a 6.5% SAIDI reduction over the past five years. This is better than the average IOU which saw a 0.5% increase in SAIFI and 2.8% SAIDI increase during the same time period.
- Utilities are using innovative thinking and breakthrough technologies to identify and mitigate problems on the distribution grid before outages are caused, including outage prediction algorithms, focused analytics to dispatch the right mix of crews, and a ReliabilityOne™ Analyzer to monitor outage performance and perform outage diagnostics.
- Utilities are collaborating on an industry-wide storm modeling approach for all types of weather events. They continue to use on-staff meteorologists to prepare for extreme weather conditions and blue-sky days.
The ReliabilityOne™ Awards recognize North American utilities that excelled during the 2018 calendar year in a number of critical industry categories, including reliability, storm response, technology and innovation, and customer engagement. PA's ReliabilityOne™ Awards are widely considered to be one of the most prestigious honors in the electric utility industry, recognizing organizations that provide their customers with the highest levels of reliability.
PA recognized five regional ReliabilityOne™ award recipients from utilities across the U.S. based on overall system-wide SAIDI and SAIFI performance. Two utilities received Outstanding Reliability Performance for Midsize Utility awards recognizing the very best Midsize investor-owned utilities. Additional categories honored utilities for Community Safety, Outstanding Customer Reliability Experience, and Outstanding Technology and Innovation. This year, PA introduced the Most Improved Utility Award given to utilities that have exhibited the highest sustained improvement levels of reliability in both duration and frequency based on data from the past five years. Six utilities received the Most Improved award.
A list of all award recipients are as follows:
National ReliabilityOne™ Excellence Award recipient:
The National ReliabilityOne™ Excellence Award was presented to Florida Power & Light Company
The National ReliabilityOne™ Excellence Award goes to the utility that showcases a focus on customer service, technology deployment, operational successes, and data and analytics. Florida Power & Light Company excelled across all these categories in terms of outage restoration practices, real time outage diagnostics, sophisticated fault locating technology, comprehensive data capture and review, proactive customer outreach programs, and innovative customer self-serve options.
This year's five Regional ReliabilityOne™ Awards recipients are:
West Region – San Diego Gas & Electric
Midwest Region – We Energies
Mid-Atlantic Region – Public Service Electric and Gas Company
Northeast Region – Consolidated Edison Company of New York
Southeast Region – Florida Power & Light Company
ReliabilityOne™ Outstanding Reliability Performance for Midsize Utility Award recipients are:
Midsize Utility – Wisconsin Public Service
Midsize Utility – Delmarva Power
ReliabilityOne™ Award recipients for specific areas of outstanding performance are:
Community Safety – San Diego Gas & Electric
Outstanding Customer Reliability Experience – Consolidated Edison Company of New York
Outstanding Technology and Innovation – Florida Power & Light Company
This year's six ReliabilityOne™ Most Improved Utility Award recipients are:
Most Improved – PPL Electric Utilities
Most Improved – Pepco Holdings
Most Improved – Atlantic City Electric
Most Improved – Southern California Edison
Most Improved – Commonwealth Edison Company
Most Improved – Ameren Illinois
The awards reception was held at the Brazos Hall in Austin before an audience that included energy industry experts and senior management of leading utilities.