Lakeland, Florida, June 10, 2020 – Lakeland Electric earned the 2020 Energy Innovator Award (EIA) from the American Public Power Association’s (APPA) Demonstration of Energy & Efficiency Developments (DEED) program. The EIA award honors utilities that have developed or applied creative, energy-efficient techniques and technologies. Awards recognize creativity, resource efficiency, benefits to utility customers, transferability, and project scope in relation to utility size. The award was presented virtually during APPA’s Public Power Connect Virtual Summit.
The Damage Assessment Restoration Toolset (DARTS) was designed by Lakeland Electric and City of Lakeland employees. It utilizes existing Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) Geographic Information System applications in conjunction with customized dashboards developed in-house, to create an easy mobile solution for all facets of damage assessment and data collection. DARTS captures location, image and expense data required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for cost reimbursement utilizing a built-in program manager application to coordinate and update collections. The entire platform works in conjunction with GIS data and maps and is integrated with Lakeland Electric’s workforce management products to coordinate work orders and employee time. The toolset works on any mobile device, with or without wi-fi or wireless networks, to enable field crews to input real-time damage assessment information while at the worksite.
“Lakeland Electric is honored to receive this award,” said Joel Ivy, Lakeland Electric General Manager. “We’re proud of our employee’s innovation, expertise, and their commitment to improving our customer’s quality of life. We know that restoring power quickly following storm events matters to our customers. This tool helps us get the right resources to the right locations quickly and it streamlines our data collection to help us keep recovery costs low.”
The Lakeland Electric Damage Assessment Restoration Toolset has been featured in the Florida Municipal Electric Association’s Relay magazine, APPA’s Public Power Daily, Lakeland’s The Ledger newspaper, Government Technology magazine, WFTS ABC Action News Tampa Bay, Polk County Government TV and on ESRI’s website. The application has also received praise from City of Lakeland elected officials.
About American Public Power Association: The American Public Power Association is the voice of not-for-profit, community-owned utilities that power 2,000 towns and cities nationwide. We represent public power before the federal government to protect the interests of the more than 49 million people that public power utilities serve, and the 93,000 people they employ. Our association advocates and advises on electricity policy, technology, trends, training, and operations. Our members strengthen their communities by providing superior service, engaging citizens, and instilling pride in community-owned power.
About Lakeland Electric: Lakeland Electric is the third-largest public power utility in the State of Florida, serving 131,000 customers with production capability of over 1100 Megawatts. The utility is also one of the first utilities established in Florida, having started operation in 1889 and then purchased by the City of Lakeland in 1904. Today Lakeland Electric’s 246 square mile territory serves the City of Lakeland and its environs with affordable, dependable, and sustainable electric power.