Hurricane Isaac damage could reach $500mn, Entergy says

Hurricane Isaac struck the Gulf region of the southeastern U.S. in late August, leaving more than 787,000 Entergy Corp. (NYSE: ETR) customers from Louisiana, Mississippi and Arkansas without electricity, making it the fourth-most significant storm in Entergy's history in terms of outages.

Entergy said total restoration costs for the repair and/or replacement of the electrical facilities in areas where Isaac hit are estimated to be in the range of $400 million to $500 million. Each utility company is responsible for its restoration cost obligations and for recovering its storm-related costs.

Entergy said all reasonable avenues for storm cost recovery are under consideration including, but not limited to: accessing funded storm reserves, securitization or other alternative financing, traditional retail recovery on an interim and permanent basis and insurance to the extent coverage is available and deductibles are met.

Entergy crews restored power to about 92 percent of customers within five days. Entergy said its utilities experienced extensive damage to their distribution systems as a result of Hurricane Isaac. Based on preliminary estimates, counted as damaged or destroyed are 4,500 poles and 2,000 transformers. Isaac also knocked 95 transmission lines out of service along with 144 substations. No material damage at the utilities' fossil or nuclear power plants has yet been identified, but detailed assessments are under way.

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