Reminder to Keep Safety the Priority in Anticipation of Flooding after Heavy Snow
January 4, 2018 – SYRACUSE, N.Y. – As frigid temperatures, ice and snow begin to thaw, rivers, creeks and streams are rising to flood levels in some parts of National Grid’s Upstate New York service area. National Grid crews, as always, are ready to respond to any damage that may result from flooding, and the company urges customers to be extremely cautious when dealing with any electricity or gas service that may be at risk.
“Safety of the public and our employees is always our first priority,” said Melanie Littlejohn, National Grid New York vice president. “National Grid is experienced in managing flood events and has a plan in place to assess damage and restore service as quickly as possible should flooding pose a threat. We are ready, and we urge our customers to be ready as well.”
The company offers the following safety tips for customers in any sort of flooding situation that might impact electricity or gas service.
- If you smell natural gas, contact National Grid as soon as possible at 1-800-892-2345
- Stay out of flooded basements or standing water. Energized wiring, outlets and natural gas service below the water line may pose a hazard.
- To have electricity service restored once flood waters have receded, contact an electrician to check your home or business to make sure that it is safe to have service energized.
- If your main fuse box or circuit breaker box has been under water, or if National Grid was directed to shut off your service due to safety-related concerns, you must have the box inspected by a certified electrical inspector before service can be restored.
- If your electric or gas appliances have been in contact with water, please contact a plumbing or heating contractor to make sure those appliances are safe to operate.
Once flood waters have receded, if safety concerns prompted National Grid to shut off your natural gas, please contact your municipal plumbing inspector to ensure your service is safe to restore before contacting National Grid.
- If flooding caused a loss of natural gas service to your home or business and flood waters have receded, please contact National Grid and we will send a service technician to your location.
- If you use a generator to supply power during an outage, be sure to only operate it outdoors. Before operating generators, be sure to 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 crews working to restore power.
- If you have lost 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.
- Power problems can sometimes interrupt public water supply systems or disable well pumps, so it’s an especially good idea to keep a supply of bottled drinking water handy, as well as some canned food.
National Grid contact information for emergencies is:
- All gas emergencies or odor of gas present: 1-800-892-2345
- To report electric outages or downed wires: 1-800-867-5222
- General questions about safety and service: 1-800-642-4272
- Call before you dig: dial 811 or 1-800-962-7962
National Grid also offers the following tips for customers to minimize inconvenience and maximize safety in the event that power interruptions occur.
- Never touch downed power lines, and always assume that any fallen lines are live electric 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.
- National Grid customers who experience outages should call National Grid’s outage line at 1-800-867-5222 immediately to expedite restoration.
- Check on elderly family members, neighbors and others who may need assistance during an outage period.
To help customers stay informed, National Grid provides a number of channels for customers to learn about service issues and interruptions. Customers can receive text message alerts and updates through a free service the company offers. The company provides real time outage information on its Outage Central page. There is also an app available for mobile devices.
Text the word STORM to NGRID (64743) to sign up for the service. E-mail alerts are also available to customers who create an online profile on the company’s website. All alert services can be started and stopped at the customer’s request. National Grid also provides storm and restoration updates through Facebook and Twitter.