Post Winter Storm Mara Initiatives

Enhancements to better serve our members

In the aftermath of Winter Storm Mara, PEC has conducted a thorough review to identify opportunities for improvement in our systems and processes. We are addressing many issues through existing projects, and others with adjustments that were developed during the storm.

PEC is committed to continuous communication and transparency as we work to improve service year round and during unforeseen events.

Emergency Operations Plan (EOP)

PEC’s EOP is the foundation of efficient emergency responses. The activation of EOP shores up resources across the cooperative and beyond, including staffing in the field, staging supplies, and communicating with and responding to members.

PEC is committed to:

  • Boosting pre-EOP communications and expanding pre-event coordination for staffing, scheduling, and logistics.

Outage Management System (OMS)

OMS is the system that PEC uses to register outages, dispatch crews, and populate the public-facing outage map. In a severe event, these integrated systems can become overwhelmed, causing the outage map to display untimely information. Because members rely on the map for critical information, such as the ability to confirm that their outage has been registered and is being addressed, this is a major focus for PEC’s after-action review.

PEC is committed to:

  • Improving information flow between the field, Control Center, and the membership.
  • Expanding employee cross-training on OMS systems to utilize additional staffing during emergency events.
  • Identifying causes of issues with the member-facing outage map and pursue strategies for improving reliability and timeliness of information.


In October of 2022, PEC launched the first phase of SMS texting capabilities. During Winter Storm Mara, many members took advantage of the ability to report their outage by texting “outage” to 25022 from the mobile number associated with their account.

When issues with the outage map became apparent, PEC staff quickly moved to utilize text-message capabilities to send targeted messages to members about their outages, developing new processes and deploying messages quickly. This proved a successful strategy that will be formalized and made more efficient for future events.

PEC is committed to:

  • Identifying all available improvements for current and future outage map.
  • Building upon targeted messaging through multiple channels, engaging with key accounts, critical load, and vulnerable members.
  • Continuing to communicate the importance of members having a mobile number saved to their accounts. Confirm your contact information by logging in to SmartHub at or by calling 888-554-4732.


PEC’s safety record during Winter Storm Mara was outstanding. The cooperative will reinforce the strategies that produce success. PEC will continue to reduce potential hazards for future events.

PEC is committed to:

  • Continuing oversight and messaging provided by safety staff in the field, in office, and for members.

Contractor support

Due to the overwhelming damage to the system, PEC utilized contractors from across the state to complete repairs as quickly and safely as possible. For the first time, PEC also accepted mutual aid from other utilities.

PEC is committed to:

  • Creating a point-of-entry process for mutual aid workers into the PEC system with guidance from safety, finance, and operations.

Reliability through compliance

PEC is committed to:

  • Creating strategy regarding communications (i.e. phone and internet) company pole contacts, vegetation management, and contract compliance.
  • Engaging with transmission providers to understand and improve emergency operations reliability.

As PEC continues to evaluate our response to Winter Storm Mara, this webpage will be updated with relevant information.