Central Electric crews are prepared to respond to any outages that may occur due to heavy rain and wind from Hurricane Irma. Most forecasts are now projecting less impact on our area early next week; however, rain and wind from this storm could possibly result in scattered outages. Despite the most recent forecasts, to be on the safe side it is important for everyone to prepare for outages ahead of time, keeping safety as the top priority. Regardless of Irma’s impact, Central Electric is prepared to respond to outages that may occur due to the inclement weather. Use the following tips to remain safe before and after the storm:
- Check your disaster supplies and replace or restock as needed. Make sure you have batteries prepared for radios and flashlights.
- Bring in anything that could possibly be picked up and thrown by high winds.
- Make sure all electronic devices are fully charged ahead of time.
- Talk with members of your household and have an evacuation plan prepared.
- If you plan to use a portable generator, make sure it is installed by a licensed electrician. Power from generators can back-feed along power lines and electrocute anyone coming in contact with them, including co-op line workers making repairs. Also, make sure it is placed in a well-ventilated area where exhaust fumes will not enter your home.
- Avoid downed or dangling power lines and report them to Central Electric immediately. Treat all downed lines as if they are energized; never assume that the line is dead.
- Stay away from flooded areas, power lines could be submerged and still energized.
- Stay alert for flooded areas and never attempt to drive through high-water.
- Keep refrigerators and freezers closed as much as possible so your food will last longer in the event of a power outage. After a power outage, thoroughly inspect perishable food and throw out any spoiled items.
- Inspect your home for any damage and take good pictures for insurance purposes.
- After the storm, drive only if necessary to keep roads clear for emergency personnel and utility workers.
Should weather conditions deteriorate in our area, crews are prepared to handle any outage situations that may occur. Please visit Central Electric’s Outage Center for information on preparing for outage situations and safe portable generator use, as well as information on reporting and tracking outages should they occur. Outages can be reported 24-hours a day by calling 1-877-766-6769.