PRE HURRICANE INFORMATION
MISSISSIPPI POWER`S PLAN OF ACTION
With the approach of a hurricane, interruptions of electric service are likely to occur. Mississippi Power crews will try to maintain service during the storm while it is safe for employees to work. After the storm passes, an extensive plan for restoring power to vital community services and to all customers is in place. If needed, crews from neighboring utilities will be on call. Once the storm passes, updated information about restoration will be provided regularly to all local media outlets.
REPORTING POWER OUTAGES
Mississippi Power has an automated telephone power outage system and numerous telephone operators on duty to take calls from customers. If the lines are busy, continue trying. Line crews will work outage calls as long as it is safe to do so, but when storm conditions become dangerous it will be necessary for crews to suspend work. If electric service is interrupted during the height of the storm, please do not call Mississippi Power at that time. Wait a reasonable time after the winds have subsided before reporting any trouble.
If you see a broken or burning wire, stay away and call Mississippi Power or local authorities. Warn others to keep clear of the fallen line and avoid contact with trees, fences or anything else the line may be touching. If a power line comes in contact with a vehicle, passengers should stay in the vehicle until crews arrive and confirm the line is de-energized.
Prior to a storm, freezers and refrigerators should be turned to their coldest settings. The more frozen food there is in a freezer, the longer it will remain frozen. Plastic jugs filled with frozen water will also help maintain the cold temperature. Use tape to seal the freezer and make it as air-tight as possible. If electric service is interrupted, well-filled freezers will keep most foods frozen for two to three days if the door is kept closed.
AFTER A STORM
If there is extensive damage to Mississippi Power`s electric system, electricity in some areas may not be restored for several days. Customers are asked to be patient. Crews will work as quickly as possible to restore service. If needed, Mississippi Power workers will be aided by crews from other utilities.
In order to satisfy the needs of the greatest number of people, electric service will be restored on a priority basis. Where possible, electric power will initially be restored to hospitals, law enforcement and other emergency facilities, public service facilities, sewerage systems, water works, and news media organizations. Main power lines from substations will be cleared and repaired first, which will restore power to the maximum possible number of customers. After that, repair crews will go block by block, street by street and home by home to restore individual service.
Mississippi Power asks its customers to please be patient and know that crews are working a plan of action to restore the greatest number of customers in the shortest possible time. Please do not make attempts to have line crews respond to individual requests, as it will only delay the overall restoration process.
After the passage of the hurricane, customers should replace any blown fuses or reset any tripped breakers in their homes. If the line connecting the house to the distribution pole is damaged, call to report an outage. If an entire neighborhood is without power, call once and then monitor news reports to follow restoration progress. Once neighborhood service is restored, customers should call again if they still do not have service. Mississippi Power`s automated phone system is the fastest, easiest way to report an outage. It is not necessary to talk with a customer service representative.
HOME ELECTRICAL DAMAGE
As Mississippi Power crews make repairs to the electric system, it is important that customers make sure the electric facilities at their homes or businesses are intact. Mississippi Power cannot restore electricity wherever electric meter boxes or service entrance pipes on the side of a home or business are damaged. Customers are responsible for contacting a licensed electrician to have those repairs made and may then call to have power restored.
For customers living in areas evacuated due to the high water caused by the storm, electricity cannot be restored until official notification that the water has receded to safe levels. Restoration of electric service in those areas will begin as soon as public officials have notified Mississippi Power that the situation is safe.
It`s important for all citizens in a storm-damaged area to be aware of potentially dangerous situations from downed power lines. Live power lines can also be hidden, or may be making contact with fallen trees or fences. Even though the electricity to your home may still be off...treat every wire as if it was energized and potentially dangerous.
During extended outages, some customers may use portable generators at their homes or businesses. It`s very important to use generators correctly. Do not use an extension cord to plug a generator into a household outlet. This can cause serious injury to you and/or restoration crews. Instead, only connect appliances directly to the generator. If you have any questions about the use of a generator, please call Mississippi Power and tell the operator you need generator assistance.
FOOD IN FREEZERS
Most freezers will hold food for three days if the door has not been opened. Do not open a freezer door to see if the foods are thawing during this time. If your power is not back on by the third day, make arrangements to place dry ice in the freezer or take foods to an operating freezer. If foods have thawed, they can be re-frozen if the food isn`t warmer than normal refrigerator temperature. Otherwise, proceed with caution. If food smells bad or is slippery, do not eat it. Use all food that has been re-frozen as soon as possible.
Mississippi Power`s numbers to report outages or downed lines:
Customer Service: 800-532-1502
Outage reports: 800-ITS-DARK (800