Tuesday, September 27

Remarks from Entergy Louisiana

The remarks below were made by Renae Conley, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana, at a news conference in Lake Charles held Monday:

"Good Afternoon!

Hurricane Rita has caused catastrophic damage to the electric infrastructure in Lake Charles and southwest Louisiana. Early damage assessments are providing evidence that much of the work will be rebuilding the electric distribution system, rather than simply repairing it.

Both the Nelson and Sabine power plants are offline and currently being assessed for damage.

Damage to the transmission system that feeds electricity in Lake Charles is extensive. Transmission crews are currently assessing the system in and around Lake Charles to determine what lines are in service and how power can be delivered into the City.

Currently, we have identified 117 transmission lines out of service and 125 substations out of service in southwest Louisiana. Damage assessment continues, and these numbers may increase.

Regarding the distribution infrastructure, we have already identified hundreds of poles and cross arms that have been damaged and need replacing. We have hundreds of miles of electrical wire down that will need repair.

At this time, while we are still assessing the damage, we can not give definitive estimates on when power will be restored to Lake Charles. We expect that we it will be weeks, rather than days, before large numbers of customers can be restored.

In the meantime, we will work with Mayor Roche and city officials to determine what critical services need prioritization for electricity, and we will work with to get power to those locations first.

In closing, I would like to say to all the citizens of Lake Charles and surrounding areas that Entergy will be a partner in the rebuilding of the area. We understand our role in getting life back to normal, and we will do everything we can to help this community.

Thank you."

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