LINCOLN – With Nebraska’s Severe Weather Awareness Week starting today, Lincoln-area residents should refresh themselves on how to prepare for severe weather and contact Lincoln Electric System in the event of a power outage.
When outages occur, customers should call the LES PowerLine at 1-888-365-2412 or report online at LES.com/report, said LES Vice President of Energy Delivery Dan Pudenz.
“PowerLine, our automated system, immediately sends a customer’s report to our dispatchers who then send repair crews into the area to locate the cause of the outage and restore power,” he said.
PowerLine is available 24/7 and can process 1,600 simultaneous calls per minute. The automated system recognizes a registered telephone number and matches that to the customer’s corresponding address listed in the database. If a customer’s number isn’t listed in the database, he or she will need to provide that information. LES urges customers to register their phone numbers by updating their information at LES.com/report-outage and click “Update.”
In the event of an outage, don’t assume your neighbors will report it. The more customers who call, the better LES can identify the scope of the outage area. LES is determined to restore power as quickly as possible, but customers should be patient if emergency infrastructure needs its power restored first.
“Customers can expect an all-out effort from LES to restore any power outages,” Pudenz said. “First and foremost, we address potentially life-threatening situations and restoring power to hospitals, fire stations and other critical community services.”
If customers use portable generators during an outage, they should never be plugged into a home outlet or connected to a building’s wiring. This won’t isolate it from LES’ electric system and it can backfeed into LES lines, causing serious injury to crews, contractors or others who come in contact with downed lines. Also, when power is restored to the electric system, it feeds into residences and can damage or destroy a generator.
LES offers these additional tips to customers during outages:
- If there’s a life-threatening emergency, customers should call 911.
- Assume a downed wire is energized, as well as anything it touches. Do not attempt to move a downed line.
- Keep a flashlight handy and have fresh batteries nearby.
- Have a phone at home that doesn’t need electricity to make calls, such as a cell phone. If severe weather is forecast, make sure your phone is fully charged.
- Turn off appliances and other electric equipment to avoid damage when electricity is restored.
- Know how to operate your garage door manually.
For more information on how to prepare for a potential power outage, visit LES.com and YouTube.com/LESvideovault.