Many Upstate NY Regions Under Tornado Watch, Customers Urged To Be Prepared
A strong storm system coming in from the west could bring potential damaging, gusty winds, heavy downpours and thunderstorms to upstate NY this afternoon and evening. National Grid is ramping up its preparations in the event the storm brings damage to its electricity and natural gas networks and the company is urging its customers to be ready, as well.
Customers Urged to Stay Safe During and After the Storm
The company offers the following tips for electricity customers to minimize inconvenience and maximize safety if power interruptions occur.
- Customers who experience an outage should call National Grid at 1-800-867-5222 to expedite restoration. Outages also can be reported through the Outage Central section of the company’s website by visiting www.nationalgridus.com , and by downloading the National Grid app available in iTunes and Google Play stores.
- Never touch downed power lines, and always assume that any fallen lines are live electricity wires. If you see one, report it immediately to National Grid or your local emergency response organization.
- People who depend on electricity-powered life support equipment, such as a respirator, should let National Grid know. To register as a life support customer, call the company’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-642-4272.
- Please drive carefully and use caution when driving near any repair crews working to restore power.
- Be sure to check on elderly family members, neighbors and others who may need assistance during an outage period.
Electricity & Generator Safety
- If you use a generator to supply power during an outage, be sure to operate it outdoors. Before operating a generator, disconnect from National Grid’s system by shutting off the main breaker located in the electric service panel. Failure to do this could jeopardize the safety of line crews and the public.
- If you lose power, turn off any appliances that were on when the power went off, but leave one light on so you will know when power is restored.
- National Grid advises natural gas customers to closely inspect areas around and over gas meters, service hook-ups and vents for ice and snow that could damage meter and service equipment, or block vents that could result in dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide.
- The symptoms of CO poisoning are similar to those of the flu. Depending upon the amount of CO in the air and length of exposure, symptoms may include headaches, weakness, confusion, chest tightness, skin redness, dizziness, nausea, sleepiness, fluttering of the heart or loss of muscle control. If you suspect carbon monoxide is present in your home, go outside immediately and breathe deeply; then call 911. If symptoms are severe, get medical attention.
- National Grid advises that you take immediate action anytime you suspect a natural gas leak:
- Get Out– All occupants should leave the house immediately. Do not use the telephone or light switches for any reason.
- Call us– After leaving the house and reaching a safe environment, call the National Grid 24-hour gas emergency number: 1-800-892-2345.
- Stay Out– Do not return to your home until National Grid tells you it is safe.
Stay Connected to National Grid
National Grid provides multiple channels for customers to learn about service issues and interruptions during storms. Customers can follow the storm on their mobile devices by using the National Grid mobile app or texting the wordSTORMtoNGRID (64743). The company provides real time outage information on its Outage Central web site atwww.nationalgridus.com/outage-central. National Grid also provides storm and restoration updates through Facebook and Twitter.