Maumelle: City Council report

Beau Buford sworn in as Maumelle Fire Chief; Entergy representatives visit to discuss recent power outages.

It was a light night on Monday for the Maumelle City Council.

At the council meeting this week, Maumelle welcomed our new fire chief, Beau Buford.

Chief Buford comes to us with 29 years of experience with the North Little Rock Fire Department, where he advanced to the rank of Assistant Chief. 

Beau Buford being sworn in as Maumelle’s New Fire Chief by Mayor Caleb Norris. (Chad Gardner)

Buford has set himself apart as a great leader and I look forward to having him serve in the city of Maumelle.

Buford, who is also a paramedic, has multiple degrees, including a master’s from Arkansas State, and is also a command Sgt. Major in the Army Reserve.

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He was chosen after an extensive search led by Mayor Caleb Norris and multiple interviews were conducted by city department heads and members of the fire department/

Entergy had two representatives attend our council meeting this week to explain the multiple lengthy outages that affected many homes on the north and west sides of the city in July. 

The outages were due to damage to Entergy equipment caused by contractors installing underground equipment in a new subdivision. According to Entergy, the contractor had not used utility locating service (811) to mark and locate underground utility lines. Due to the extent of the damage, Entergy made the decision to get power back on as quickly as possible when the damage first occurred since we were in the middle of a heat wave. They were then going to wait until cooler weather when they would have to take the power off-line again to make a permanent repair. On Monday, July 18, due to the ongoing heatwave and demand on the system, this temporary repair failed and caused additional issues with Entergy equipment. When this second outage began, Entergy decided they could not wait to permanently repair the damage. Due to the lengthy process of repairing and replacing the damaged equipment, this resulted in the eight-hour outage from 4 p.m. through midnight on July 18. 

Entergy strongly encouraged residents and contractors to utilize 811 to locate utilities if any digging will take place in public rights of way.

There was no action taken by the council on any other agenda items at this week’s meeting. Let me know if I can ever be of service to you. 

Chad, 501-529-1336, chad4maumelle@gmail.com