From RSOE EDIS:
More than half a million Louisiana homes and businesses lost power during Isaac and most will stay that way for at least several days, Entergy spokesman Chanel Lagarde said. As of noon Wednesday, 552,000 customers were without electricity, including 85% of New Orleans, Lagarde said.
Entergy, which serves most of Louisiana, initially planned to dispatch 4,000 workers to repair the power lines once the storm passed. But with outages so widespread, the company said it will need 10,000 workers. Crews from power companies in 24 states, through mutual aid agreements, will pitch in, he said. “The one thing that’s really hampering us is that the winds are still here. The storm is just hanging around,” Lagarde said. “Looks like it won’t be until tomorrow (Thursday) that we can get out there.”
Workers cannot go up in bucket trucks to do repairs until the winds drop below 30 mph. Entergy expects it will take “several days” before the company can restore power to most of its customers. The company will not have a more accurate estimate until the storm subsides and workers can assess the damage, Lagarde said. Lagarde also said the number of outages will continue to rise as the storm travels north through the state.