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Residents urged to prepare for cold weather

KU offers weather safety tips

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Jan. 6, 2015) — With temperatures expected to drop over the next few days Kentucky Utilities Company encourages customers to prepare for the extreme cold.

winter-coldSuggested tips are:

  • Have your furnace checked by a certified professional to make sure it’s in peak operating condition. Remember to check your filter each month and replace it as necessary, based on the manufacturer’s recommendations. A dirty filter will slow air flow, making the system work harder to keep the indoor air temperature at a consistent, comfortable setting.
  • Seal leaks and gaps around your home with caulk, spray foam, or weather-stripping to keep the warm air in and the cold air out.
  • Build an emergency kit that includes a battery-powered radio, flashlights for everyone in the family, fresh batteries for any devices, first-aid kit, and over-the-counter and prescription medications. A list of more essential emergency kit supplies can be found at www.ready.gov.
  • Always operate a portable generator safely and outdoors to allow for proper venting. It’s best to consult with a qualified, licensed electrician and review the manufacturer’s instructions before installing the generator.
  • Strong wind, snow and ice accumulation can sometimes cause tree branches to break and fall into power lines. Stay away and consider all fallen wires dangerous.
  • KU customers should call 800-981-0600 to report a downed wire or power outage. KU customers can also report an outage online at lge-ku.com after registering their account.
  • Be sure to use LG&E and KU’s outage map on your computer or smartphone, www.lge-ku.com/storm, to receive near real time information about outages throughout our system, a summary of outages by zip code and county, and estimated restoration time.

Heating Assistance available:

  • Community Winterhelp, the utility’s primary heating assistance program, is available to customers who have difficulty paying their heating bills during the winter months.
  • KU is matching residential customers’ donations to the program, $1 for $1, creating a greater pool of funds to help those having a tough time keep their families comfortable during the frigid conditions.
  • With the match in effect from Oct. 1, 2014 through March 31, 2015, the utility encourages customers to consider making a tax-deductible donation to the program by making a monthly pledge or a one-time contribution. Even rounding up a payment to the next whole dollar makes a difference.

Eligibility for heating assistance benefits is determined by the Community Winterhelp nonprofit organization. The program assists families in dire financial situations and lack of resources, leaving a family with no heat or the immediate prospect of no heat; and families with a family member who is elderly, very young, seriously ill or disabled. Neither KU or LG&E plays a part in determining eligibility.

Families in need of assistance will be interviewed by Community Winterhelp service partners and should contact the agency to apply for funds.