NYSEG and RG&E Tracking Tropical Storm Hermine, Making Preparations
Customers Urged To Sign Up for Outage Alerts
ROCHESTER, NY — Sept. 3, 2016 — NYSEG and RG&E, subsidiaries of AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR), are monitoring weather forecasts and making preparations in advance of Tropical Storm Hermine, which could bring rain and strong winds to the region over the Labor Day holiday weekend.
NYSEG and RG&E’s storm readiness teams have already held planning meetings, and the company is preparing crews and equipment to ensure that adequate resources are in place to restore any downed lines or power outages that might occur as a result of the storm. If the need arises, the company can also call on resources from the other AVANGRID energy companies in Connecticut and Maine, as well as regional mutual assistance partners.
Current forecasts call for Hermine to brush past the state as it makes its way up the Atlantic coastline, bringing rain and gusty winds on Sunday and Monday that could bring down trees and power lines. However, its exact path remains uncertain.
“Every hour of every day, we are prepared to respond to power interruptions, but in a case like this, all of our employees across the state are on heightened alert,” said Mark S. Lynch, president of NYSEG and RG&E. “Our customer relations centers and operations personnel are prepared, and we are ensuring that materials are on hand to repair any damage to our electricity delivery systems.”
“We always encourage our customers to be prepared for dangerous storms and the possibility of service interruptions,” Lynch said. “Most importantly, we urge them to stay safe.”
Customers are urged always to be prepared for the possibility of severe weather. The 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season got underway June 1 and continues through Nov. 1, but major storms are a possibility year-round. Here are some things customers can do to protect themselves and their families.
Before a Storm Strikes
- Sign up for Outage Alerts at nyseg.com or rge.com. We’ll let you know when we are aware of a power outage affecting your area, provide an estimated restoration time (when available) and send confirmation when service is restored.
- Anyone who uses life-sustaining equipment that operates on electricity should contact their utility right away (NYSEG: 800-572-1111; RG&E: 800-743-2110). Customers may be enrolled in a critical customer program or provided specific advice on how to prepare for power interruptions.
- Keep handy flashlights, candles, matches, a first-aid kit, a battery-operated radio or TV, a manual can-opener and a battery-operated clock. Stock up on fresh batteries, too.
- Fill containers with drinking water and keep a supply of canned or dried food, as well as any medications you need. (Don’t forget to check expiration dates.)
- Have at least one phone that’s not dependent on electricity. Remember: Cordless phones won’t work during a power interruption.
- Charge your mobile phone so you can report outages or emergencies. Store key contacts in memory, and keep a paper copy for backup.
- Visit Outage Central at nyseg.com or rge.com to track current outages on our Outage Map. You’ll also find updates and important storm- and outage-related information.
- If you have a home generator, be sure it is installed by a licensed electrician. The generator must be connected to your home’s wiring through a special transfer switch to ensure that the house wires are isolated from the utility wires so that power lines cannot be energized by your generator.
If You Lose Service
- Report outages by calling NYSEG at 800-572-1131 and RG&E at 800-743-1701.
Always assume downed power lines are live and dangerous, and be mindful of natural gas odors. Report them to NYSEG or R&GE, and call 911 if there is an immediate danger.
- 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, DVD players, computers) to prevent overloading and possible damage when power is restored. This 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, and never use outdoor grills or stoves inside.
- Keep refrigerators and freezers closed. For information about food safety, visit http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/refridg_food.html
After Power Is Restored
- Turn on appliances and sensitive electronic equipment one at a time to avoid overloading circuits.
- If a basement or home was flooded, 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.
- Replenish any emergency supplies used during the storm.