Restoring Power to the People: PECO Wins Emergency Recovery Award from Edison Electric Institute

Recently PECO, an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation and longtime Intergraph customer, was presented with Edison Electric Institute’s Emergency Recovery Award for its outstanding efforts in restoring electric service to its more than 715,000 customers affected by Ice Storm Nika in February 2014.

Over a 24 hour period, Ice Storm Nika caused widespread damage across PECO's southeastern Pennsylvania service territory, which includes more than 95 miles of wire, 520 poles, 2,505 cross arms, 302 transformers and 14,422 fuses. But in less than 72-hours after the storm, PECO was able to restore service to 91 percent of its customers. Ninety-eight percent of customers were restored within five days and all customers were restored within seven days. And helping PECO customer service personnel, dispatch operators, and field crews manage the entire service outage event was InService from Intergraph.

Intergraph's InService is a fully integrated outage management and workforce management system that helps utility providers to pinpoint and restore services to customers as quickly as possible. InService outage management and dispatching software uses information from a utility provider’s real-time monitoring system. InService gave PECO the ability to monitor its network in real-time, pinpoint the location of failed network assets, and dispatch field crews from a single application.  The capability to do all of these things was a very important reason as to why PECO was able to restore such a large percentage of its service territory so quickly.

Ice Storm Nika’s damage was so bad that PECO crews were joined by local contractors and crews from Illinois, Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, Alabama, Arkansas, and as far as Canada. InService helped PECO to communicate, coordinate, and manage workflows with multiple crews unfamiliar with PECO's network.

This isn’t the first time an Intergraph customer and InService user has received the Emergency Response Award from the Edison Electric Institute. In 2012, the Liberty Utilities was presented the award for its utility restoration efforts after a tornado tore through Joplin and Duquesne, Missouri in 2011. The Emergency Recovery Award is presented annually to U.S. and foreign-based companies to recognize emergency response efforts in restoring electric service that has been disrupted by severe weather conditions or other natural events. Award recipients were chosen by a panel of industry judges following an international nomination process.

Congratulations to PECO for winning such a prestigious award. If you would like more information on InService’s capabilities, visit our website. Or contact me directly at

About Eric J. Charette

Eric J. Charette currently serves as Technical Manager of Business Development for Utilities, Communication and Transportation with Hexagon Safety & Infrastructure in the U.S. He is responsible defining long-term organizational strategic goals and provides technical direction, leading all marketing and presales efforts, maintains relationships with business partners and serves as product manager. Eric previously served as Executive Consultant for outage, mobile workforce and distribution management solutions. Prior to joining Hexagon in 2006, Eric worked for Wisconsin Public Service Corporation as a distribution field engineer where he was responsible for ensuring safety and reliability of the electrical distribution system by providing engineering support for design, construction, operation and maintenance. Later promoted to Senior Outage Management Engineer, he was responsible for all outage management at WPSR, providing technical and strategic expertise and setting policy. He also successfully led the client-side implementation of the corporate OMS project including serving as the system administrator and client lead responsible for change management and end user training. Eric has been recognized as an industry expert in utility operations with several industry publications and presentations. He also serves on the Advisory Committee for the DistribuTECH conference. Eric graduated from Michigan Technological University, in Houghton, Michigan, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering, with an emphasis in Power Systems. Eric is a registered professional engineer in the states of Wisconsin and Alabama.