In the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the World Dialogue on Regulation carried a discussion on regulatory responses to disasters.
It appears that this discussion has continued relevance to developed countries as well, as seen in this communication from the National Regulatory Research Institute in the US:
“Severe January ice storms left over 450,000 customers from Texas and Oklahoma to Michigan, New York, and New Hampshire without power. In Oklahoma, sleet and freezing rain built up ice four inches thick, bringing down trees and power lines, leaving some customers without power for as much as a week. Commissions typically investigate a utility’s response to a long-term major outage, and these severe winter storms will cause regulators to refocus on outage management and restoration issues. An ongoing NRRI study on electricity outages recommends that regulators make their expectations of electric utilities more specific and investigates regulatory approaches that encourage adoption of efficient outage management and restoration systems.”