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news release

NYSEG Encourages Customers in Flood-Prone Areas to Consider How Utility Services Could Be Affected

Lancaster, NY – Warmer temperatures and rainfall over the next few days will result in considerable snow melt across the area impacted by historic lake-effect snow. NYSEG, a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, encourages customers in flood-prone areas to consider how their electricity and natural gas services could be affected by high water. By taking appropriate actions, customers affected by flooding can ensure their safety and lessen potential property damage.

NYSEG offers customers the following tips:

>> If flooding of a home or business has already occurred or is about to occur, customers should contact their utility companies to have electricity and natural gas service turned off. Customers should never attempt to turn off electricity and natural gas service.
>> Stay out of flooded basements. Energized wiring or outlets below the water line may pose a hazard; natural gas service in a flooded basement may also pose a danger.
>> To have NYSEG electricity service restored once flood waters have receded: Customers should contact an electrician to make sure that it is safe to have electricity service turned on before contacting their utility. If the main fuse box or circuit breaker box has been under water, it must be inspected by a Certified Electrical Inspector before service can be restored. Someone must be present for service to be turned on, the basement must be free of water and the electrical panel must be clean and free of debris. Customers and contractors should never attempt to turn on electricity service.
>> To have NYSEG natural gas service restored once flood waters have receded: If the natural gas meter and/or regulator was under water, customers must first contact NYSEG. If any natural gas equipment (furnace, boiler, water heater, etc.) has been under water, they need to contact a plumbing and heating contractor to have the equipment checked. Customers can then contact NYSEG to have service restored. Someone must be present for service to be turned on. At least one natural gas appliance not affected by the flood must be ready to light. Customers and contractors should never attempt to turn on natural gas service.
NYSEG also reminds customers:

>> If you smell natural gas, get up, get out and call your natural gas company from another location. Do not light matches, use any electrical appliances, turn lights on or off, or use the phone at the location of the suspected leak – any of these actions could provide a source of ignition for any natural gas that is present.

>> Stay away from downed power lines. Even lines that appear “dead” can be deadly.

>> Be extremely cautious when clearing snow off roofs. Also be alert to any signs that the snow load on structures could cause roofs to collapse.

To report electric emergencies and power interruptions, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1131.

To report natural gas emergencies and odors, NYSEG customers should call 1.800.572.1121.