NYSEG and RG&E Preparing for Possible Effects of Nasty Mid-Week Storm
>> NYSEG and RG&E urge customers to stay away from downed power lines – even lines that appear dead can be deadly. NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131 to report downed power lines or other hazardous situations; RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.1701.
>> Emergency generators can be dangerous. Carefully read, understand and follow manufacturer’s instructions when operating an emergency generator. Never run emergency generators indoors; operate them only outdoors in well-ventilated areas and away from windows and doors.
>> NYSEG and RG&E remind customers to stay out of flooded basements because energized wiring or outlets below the water line may pose a hazard. Natural gas service in a flooded basement may also pose a danger. If a basement or home is in danger of flooding, customers should contact their utilities to turn off electricity and/or natural gas service.
>> For electricity emergencies and to report power interruptions, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131; RG&E customers should call 1.800.734.1701.
>> For natural gas emergencies and to report suspected natural gas odors, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1121; RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.1702.
With the weather forecast for the next two days calling for a mixed bag of freezing rain, sleet and/or heavy, wet snow across the NYSEG and RG&E service areas, the companies’ emergency planners are preparing to respond to storm-related power interruptions. Tree contact with power lines is the leading cause of power interruptions, and NYSEG and RG&E are particularly concerned about the potential impact of the wintry mix on trees.
NYSEG and RG&E line crews and support personnel are on heightened alert, the companies’ customer relations centers are prepared and materials are on hand to repair any damage to the companies’ electricity delivery systems.
NYSEG and RG&E offer customers the following tips:
Before a storm strikes
- Anyone who uses life-sustaining equipment that operates on electricity should contact their utility right away (NYSEG at 1.800.572.1111; RG&E at 1.800.743.2110). Customers may be enrolled in a critical customer program or provided specific advice on how to prepare for power interruptions.
- Keep flashlights, a battery-powered radio or TV and fresh batteries handy.
- Have at least one telephone that is not dependent on electricity. (Cordless phones won’t work during a power interruption.)
- Keep a supply of non-perishable food and bottled water on hand.
- Make sure cell phone batteries are fully charged.
During a power interruption
- Contact neighbors to see if their power is off. A loss of power may be the result of a blown fuse or a tripped circuit breaker.
- Contact NYSEG (1.800.572.1131) or RG&E (1.800.743.1701) to report a power interruption. Our telephone systems let callers report the problem, help our crews respond quickly and efficiently, and provide customers with power interruption updates. Because many people may be trying to reach us during a power interruption, phone lines may be busy. Anyone who has access to a working computer during a power interruption can also report the interruption online at www.nyseg.com or www.rge.com.
- Listen to a battery-powered radio for weather and power restoration updates.
- Turn off major appliances (electric water heaters, refrigerators and freezers) and sensitive electronic equipment (TVs, VCRs, DVD players, computers, audio equipment) to prevent overloading and possible damage when power is restored. Turning off this equipment may mean unplugging it, turning off a circuit breaker or removing a fuse for the circuit that provides power to this equipment. Leave one light switch “on” to know when power has been restored.
- Don’t use a natural gas or propane range to heat your home.
- Never use outdoor grills or stoves inside.
- Keep refrigerators and freezers closed as much as possible. Most food will last 24 hours if you minimize the opening of refrigerator and freezer doors.
After your power is restored
- If a basement or home was flooded, customers should have an electrician check the home and have a plumbing and heating contractor check natural gas appliances before contacting NYSEG or RG&E to have services turned on.
- Turn on appliances and sensitive electronic equipment one at a time to avoid overloading circuits.
- Replenish emergency supplies used during the storm.
About NYSEG and RG&E: NYSEG and RG&E are subsidiaries of Iberdrola USA. NYSEG serves 873,000 electricity customers and 259,000 natural gas customers across more than 40% of upstate New York. RG&E serves 362,000 electricity customers and 299,000 natural gas customers in a nine-county region centered on the City of Rochester. Providing outstanding customer service and meeting our customers’ energy requirements in an environmentally-responsible manner, NYSEG and RG&E are valuable assets to the communities we serve. For more information, visit www.nyseg.com and www.rge.com.
About Iberdrola USA: Iberdrola USA, a subsidiary of global energy leader Iberdrola, S.A., is an energy services and delivery company serving more than 2.4 million customers in upstate New York and New England. For more information about Iberdrola USA, visit www.iberdrolausa.com.