Restored: No power outages in Florida just 9 days after Hurricane Idalia

More than 568,500 power reconnections occurred since the storm first hit the state’s Gulf Coast last Wednesday

Nine days after Hurricane Idalia slammed into Florida, every existing electricity account across the state is back online.

Between noon and 3 p.m. Friday, utility workers reconnected the last 498 properties still without power to bring the number down to zero, data from the Public Service Commission shows.

All were Taylor County, one of several hard-hit counties in the Big Bend region where the Panhandle curves into the Florida peninsula.

Overnight and through Friday morning line workers restored electricity for 965 accounts in Suwannee County, 313 accounts in Lafayette County and 130 accounts in Taylor.

The number of reported outages at one time peaked at 288,000 at 3 p.m. Aug. 30.

Altogether, more than 568,000 power reconnections occurred since the storm first hit the state’s Gulf Coast last Wednesday, according to a figure Gov. Ron DeSantis provided Monday.

Before the storm hit, Florida had close to 30,000 line workers, tree trimmers and tradespeople staged and ready to respond to the damage. The Governor called it “an incredible amount of manpower.”

“This has probably been the fastest restoration, even faster than we did during Hurricane Ian,” he said. “The co-ops here locally are working with Duke (Energy), the municipals, Florida Power & Light, (Tampa Electric) and every utility provider in the state, pretty much, to get those homes up and running as soon as possible.”

Idalia made landfall in Florida’s Big Bend near Keaton Beach minutes before 8 a.m. Aug. 30 at Category 3 strength, bringing maximum sustained winds of 125 mph and up to 9-foot storm surges in some areas.

Early reports said at least two people died — a 59-year-old from Gainesville and a 40-year-old from Spring Hill — in separate car crashes where rain was a major factor, attributing the information to Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Steve Gaskin.

However, the Governor said Thursday afternoon that just the Gainesville death was attributable to the storm.

“Fortunately, we have not had the same type of loss of life that we’ve had with something like a Hurricane Ian,” he said, referring to the catastrophic category 5 storm that slammed the state in September, killing 149 people. “So far, there’s been one confirmed fatality and that was a traffic fatality in Alachua County.”

Florida Power & Light, which boasts more than 5.8 million customers statewide, fully reconnected all of their customers by Sept. 1.

Municipal providers did so to within the same timeframe for their affected customers.

Duke Energy, the state’s second-largest power utility by customers, reported all of its 1.96 million customers had electricity by 9 a.m. Monday.

Tampa Electric, which has 832,182 customers, restored power to all of its affected accounts by 9 a.m. Thursday. Ahead of the storm, the company secured about 3,000 workers from other utilities, including line crews, tree trimmers and damage assessors. Last night, those workers were in the field repairing company lines and those of other utilities in hard-hit areas, a company press note said.

“The weather impact was not as severe as anticipated (in our service areas), and our crews were able to work through the night to restore customers during the storm,” Tampa Electric President and CEO Archie Collins said. “We are thankful the storm had only minimal impact on our customers.”

Florida Public Utilities reported that all its 29,240 accounts were back online by Wednesday night.

The most outages — and most persistent outages — were in areas serviced by community owned and operated cooperatives, including the Central Florida Electric Cooperative, Clay Electric Cooperative and Suwannee Valley Electric Cooperative.

By Friday morning the Tri-County Electric Cooperative (TCEC) was the last such operation working to restore power in and around Woods Creek, Keaton Beach, Ma Dixon, San Pedro and U.S. 19.

“For those who can safely receive electricity to their meter, the estimated restoration time is Friday evening,” TCEC personnel wrote online. “We have 1,600 personnel actively working across our system, crews are hard at work and will not be released until power is restored to all of our members.”

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


  • Yulia

    August 31, 2023 at 11:40 am

    Dixie county got hit pretty badly and so far there isn’t one electric vehicle repairing any of the power outages. There are 92% is out of power here. So do people here have to wait until the other 6 counties get theirs back first?? That is bazar!!!

  • Earl Pitts "Govornment Reformer" American

    September 1, 2023 at 8:26 am

    Good mornting America,
    This power restoration effort and excelant results is a testimony as to why we need conservatives in charge whenever a disaster strikes.
    Just try to imagine the huge numbers that would still be without power under a Crist, Fried, or Gillum administration as their leftist administrations dither their time away on dirverting Federal funds to themselves and restoring the power in a fair and equatable way.
    “OK boys the Dook 4 Brains Leftist Govornor wants you to stop all power restoration in this neighborhood because a gay customer across town is being prioritized. So drive over there and fix his power right now these straight folks just need to wait”.
    So as you can clearly see the last thing Florida needs durring any disaster is to have a Dook 4 Brains Leftist Govornment in charge of Florida.

    Here comes Earl’s Genious Fix:

    We should have rotating govornments in Florida with the Honest Conservatives in power in the 6 months of Hurricane season. And the lying theiving leftists can be in power for the 6 months which are the non- Hurricane months.
    This is a true genious govornmental reform EPA mandate which will catch on nation-wide and dare I say World-Wide.

    Here’s The Proof:

    The irresponsable child minded Leftists can steal from us and generally muck things up for 6 months out of every year. The following 6 months we send in the Adult Conservatives to govern and they will build back Florida’s financial reserves from the leftist govornments exessive irresponsablity. And best of all be a wise and fair leadership team durring Hurricane Season.
    This Govornment Reform Segment Was Brought To You By Earl Pitts American.
    You are welcome America,

    • Ms.Moneypenny

      September 1, 2023 at 9:38 am

      Earl thanks for filling in while we are between Bonds. As we recently confirmed Desantis path to POTUS to be 100% please share with him that we actually shadowbaned the entire Biden Administration thru AI and tweeking Elon’s and the Zuck’s elementry attempts at shadowbaning to new levels. They really think they are in charge [snicker giggles].
      And Earl for a Yank you are a stand up kind of guy. If you can ever get away to this side of the pond you better stop in to spend some time with me. You need a break from saving the planet 24/7. MP

      • Earl Pitts "Not A Secret Agent" American

        September 1, 2023 at 10:04 am

        America please ignore the post from Moneypenny…its NOT a mis-routed top-secret communication or anything like that. I, Earl Pitts American disavow any knowledge of anything in that commumique and can clearly assure all Americans that such a thing as described is not even possable with world technology still 137 years away from being able to do anything as far fetched and “ScienceFictioney” as may have been described.
        So, in closing, everyone is hereby ordered, for their own security, to forget what you read and never speak of it to anyone ever.
        Thank you America and The World,
        Earl Pitts American

        • Earl Pitts "Not A Secret Agent" American

          September 1, 2023 at 10:14 am

          …and to my lovely wife, Mrs Earline Pitts American, I dont even know that Moneypenny woman. And I’ve been thinking that its about time I got you that 3 carat Diamond “25 Glorious years with Earl” Ring and that new Car you have been looking at.
          Early ya Boy!!!!

          • Earl Pitts "Pedophile" American

            September 8, 2023 at 1:24 pm

            Actually, who am I kidding? I’m not married.
            I diddle kids and my life is worthless.

  • Justin T. Oh Canada

    September 1, 2023 at 9:09 am

    I’m a step ahead of you Big Earl,
    This year I’m bringing on some conservative chumps to build back up our financial reserves while I take a 6 month vacation each year going forward. Just to be clear I hate you and all conservatives Earl. But after reading and stealing and modifying your plan to my needs I see some wisdom there. But I still hate you.
    Thanks Earl,
    Justin T. “The Big Voice On The Left In Canada”

Comments are closed.


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