Generators meet needs in power outages- but demand outpaces supply

Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 8:24 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - This year’s ice storm and spring tornados have left many residents without power. Some homes with generators were not left in the dark.

An expert shares what you should know but right now generator demand is out pacing the supply.

“Kinda scary. No lights and you never know what’s going on with people driving through,” said Larry Bridges.

The retired Entergy electrical meter-man had lights when trees took down power lines in his Fairwood Drive neighborhood last week. His generator allowed his family to have power and his grandchildren to continue virtual learning.

“Back in Katrina, my lights went out and they stayed out for about two weeks and I have a family here and so I decided to go ahead and invest in one of the generators,” said Bridges.

Small portable generators can keep on lights and a few appliances.

“Typically we’re going to run the majority of the house or the whole house,” said Les Battles.

The Generator Technologies Managing Partner said an air conditioned, all electric, three bedroom home would require a generator between 14,000-24,000 watts.

The cost is $7,000 and up- depending on your need.

“It’s a fully automated system. Power goes out, generator starts,” said Battles. “Once it comes up to power and goes through it’s countdown cycle it transfers and you’re on standby power. These generators run off of natural gas or propane.”

Right now the units are in high demand.

“The generators that we have in here are all sold,” added Battles. “Everything that we get in is sold. So that’s our biggest problem is supply.”

The units require annual maintenance and servicing after 100 hours of use. Heading into hurricane season there is a long waiting list. Generators purchased today won’t arrive until next year.

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