Southwestern Electric Power Co. urged customers to be prepared for a potential extreme winter weather event. Forecasts predict dangerous, below-freezing temperatures, high winds and some wintry precipitation across Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana. These factors can stress the electric grid and cause utility problems. SWEPCO personnel are prepared if power outages occur and are asking customers to do the same by following these tips.
- Develop a plan for you and your family. Decide now what you’ll do if there’s an extended power outage.
- If you or a family member relies on uninterrupted electric service for health reasons, make a plan now in case there are extended outages.
- Gather an emergency outage kit that includes a portable heater. Review and follow safety specifications before using.
- Make sure your contact information – including your cell number – is current with family, friends and others.
- Learn more about making an emergency kit and get other preparedness tips at SWEPCO.com/Outages/StormPrep
- Charge power banks ahead of time to help keep your cell phones charged.
- Report outages and check power restoration status at SWEPCO.com/Outages
- Download the SWEPCO mobile app for quick access to outage information: SWEPCO.com/App.
- Sign up to get SWEPCO alerts: SWEPCO.com/Alerts.
- Follow SWEPCO on social media.
- Treat all downed lines as dangerous — they can carry an electric current that can cause serious or even fatal injuries. If you see a fallen wire, stay away and keep others away, including children and pets. Call SWEPCO at 1-888-218-3919 or 911 immediately.
- Always use caution with any alternate sources of lighting, cooking, cooling or heating. Never operate lanterns, heaters, generators, fuel-fired stoves or burn charcoal without proper ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.
- If you use a portable or RV generator, do not plug the generator into your home’s main electrical panel. This can “back-feed” electricity into outside utility lines, creating the danger of electrocution for repair crews and the public. Instead, read the manufacturer’s instructions, and only plug essential appliances directly into the generator.
- Be careful when driving or walking near all utility work zones.
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