Weekend storms cause multiple outages

Three tornadoes landed in Singer early Sunday, May 19. Above, two people are pictured trying to get a tree off Ricky Cooley’s house. (Photo courtesy of Alda Clark.)


Beauregard Electric Cooperative, Inc. continues to repair equipment in seven parishes that took a hit of five EF1 Tornadoes early Saturday morning, May 18.

At the height of the storm, more than 6,000 residents were without power. As the storms rolled eastward in southwest Louisiana, BECi began assessing the damage. Multiple poles were uprooted, broken or downed bringing power lines and equipment such as transformers, insulators and fuses along with them.

BECi called upon its Mutual Aid Assistance and with the help of neighboring electric cooperatives and utility contractors, began to restore power. The damage was intense and scattered among the seven parishes it serves. BECi logged in more than 150 separate outages requiring multiple hours each to complete restoration. “With an average of 8.28 meters per mile of line, it takes longer than normal to restore power to our rural communities,” states Kay Fox, VP of Marketing and Member Services. “Our linemen have worked tirelessly to bring power back to the homes of its members.”

As of 5 p.m., Monday, May 20, power was restored to all but 715 members. While many of those will be restored Tuesday, some will remain without power until Wednesday.

BECi is the distribution cooperative that serves the electric needs of more than 43,000 residential, commercial and industrial members in a 7-parish area of southwest and central Louisiana.


Cleco has restored power to all of the nearly 20,000 customers who experienced outages following severe thunderstorms in its central and southern service territory this past weekend.

“Crews have been working around the clock since the storms hit. We had a lot of damage to our system, including broken poles and downed wire,” said James Lass, general manager of distribution operations and emergency management. “While our crews are making progress, some customers will remain without power through the night. We appreciate our customers’ patience as crews work safely and efficiently to restore power.”

Cleco reminds customers to use caution around downed power lines. Call 911 or Cleco at 1-800-622-6537 to report unsafe electrical situations.