said. “The storm hit Tuesday night and on
Thursday morning there were still no phones
and we didn’t know if we could get to the
farms. I am so thankful; we have such a good
relationship with our producers. They went
ahead and got their houses ready, running
on generator power. They just assumed the
chicks were coming. I am not going to say
that chick delivery was smooth, but we did
not miss a chick delivery.”
that it was not a normal ice storm. Everyone
was without power, and there was no com-
munication. In circumstances like this,
“Even a great team can be overwhelmed,
and you will need help,” he said.
all times, he said.
Many diesel generators are not run
enough hours to keep the fuel fresh. Fuel
that sits in the tank for an extended period
of time can accumulate condensation, and
algae can grow in it. Impurities in the fuel
can clog the fuel ;lter, starve the engine of
fuel and cause the generator to shut down.
Petty said that some growers were reporting low oil pressure shut downs for their
Feed mill out of power
When the storm hit, the feed mill had
2. 5 days worth of ;nished feed in inven-
tory. Initially, the mill was completely
without power. Generators were obtained
which allowed for feed to be loaded out, but
it was four days before generators arrived
and were hooked up which could allow for
✔Know how to operate the system manually.
✔Be able to bypass automatic shutoff equipment during an emergency situation.
✔Exercise the generator and operate the auto-transfer switch weekly.
✔Inspect the generator before and after the weekly test.
✔Use fuel additives that kill and disperse algae.
✔Keep fuel fresh. Pump fuel out for use in a truck or tractor if it isn’t burned in
✔Batteries and fuel filters cause most generator problems. Always have an extra
set of fuel filters at hand.
✔Replace the generator’s battery every two year. The old battery can be
used in a tractor or truck for the rest of its useful life.
formed and assigned specific
tasks. Power, road, compost, chick
delivery, feed delivery and feed
manufacturing teams focused
resources on problems speci;c to
generators. The real problem was a clogged
fuel ;lter that would bog down the engine
and show low oil pressure.
After 15 days, only four farms were still
on generator power, so the technicians went
back to North Carolina.
Miles of high voltage towers came down in
the severe winter storm.
Feed was purchased from mills that had
power and delivery vehicles were brought
in from other areas. With all these efforts,
no birds were out of feed for more than
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
It didn’t take long for Hughes to realize
Keeping the generators
Atlantic Power Solutions, a
vendor used by Perdue in North
There were only four true equipment
failures, Petty said, but there were lots
of fuel ;lter problems. It is important to
have replacement fuel ;lters on hand at
The last farm came off generator power
28 days after the storm ended. All the
generators started initially, but since the
phones weren’t working, the alarms did
All told, three houses of birds were lost
due to power problems. While the storm’s
impact on the complex could have been a
lot worse, Hughes said things could have
gone even smoother with more preparation. As a result, the company has altered
emergency plans for this winter.
Perdue has purchased satellite phones
which are kept in Alabama during hurricane season and deployed in Kentucky
in winter months.
Growers have been noti;ed that the
hatchery is the emergency meeting place