KU and LG&E urge customers to plan during Severe Weather Preparedness Month
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (March 20, 2014) – From snow and ice storms to rain showers, thunder, lightning and tornadoes, severe weather can wreak havoc when it strikes. While we can’t control the weather pattern, we can control how prepared we are for spring storms.
On this first day of spring, Kentucky Utilities Co. urges customers to evaluate their readiness plans during this Severe Weather Preparedness month, and offer three simple to steps to prepare for severe weather.
Plan ahead: Visit www.ready.gov to make a plan and learn how to build an emergency supply kit, which should include items such as prescription medicines, a weather radio, important phone numbers, a first aid kit, flashlights and extra batteries, to name a few. Before severe weather strikes, KU prepares by monitoring weather conditions, placing field crews and business partners on alert and readying operating equipment and material. Throughout the year, KU makes infrastructure investments and perform regular system maintenance such as tree trimming and hazardous tree removals to enhance system reliability.
Stay informed: During outage situations, system and restoration updates are provided through the KU and LG&E online outage map and automated phone system. At the beginning of a widespread restoration event, KU must first assess damage to the electric system before repairs can be prioritized. Keeping customers informed of the companies’ progress is an essential part of KU’s emergency response plan. In times of widespread power outages, general restoration information and safety tips are provided on KU and LG&E’s Facebook page, Twitter feed and official company blog.
Be safe: Always assume any downed wire is an energized power line. Stay away and report it immediately. KU customers should call 1-800-981-0600. Visit www.lge-ku.com/storm for important safety information concerning portable generators, food storage and electric service.
When responding to major power outages across the utilities’ service territory, priority is given to critical-care organizations, such as hospitals, fire and police stations and nursing homes. At the same time, KU crews focus on restoring service to schools, airports and other utility infrastructure – like water and sewer pumping stations.
In making repairs, the goal is to fix problems that will restore power to large groups of customers simultaneously, so hundreds or even thousands of customers come back online with one repair job. KU must repair any critical infrastructure that might be damaged, like the transmission lines and substations that carry electricity into neighborhoods and commercial areas, before power can be restored to those locations. Crews then move to where neighborhoods can be restored and continue on to those problems that affect power to individual streets and homes.
Customers experiencing a power outage should report it to the company by either using the online outage reporting system or by calling KU at 1-800-981-0600. While every storm is unique and presents distinct challenges to utility crews, KU remains committed to restoring power as safely and quickly as possible and keeping customers informed every step of the way.