Nodak Electric Cooperative strives to provide you with reliable, uninterrupted service every day of the year, but sometimes Mother Nature creates unavoidable power outages. Nodak Electric wants you to remain safe during severe winter weather, so consider preparing now for the possibility of power outages this winter.
Before a power outage
- Build or restock your emergency preparedness kit, including a flashlight, batteries, cash and first-aid supplies.
- Make sure you have alternative charging methods for your phone or any device that requires power.
- If a storm is predicted, charge cellphones and any battery-powered devices beforehand.
- Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it.
- If you rely on anything that is battery-operated or power dependent like a medical device, determine a backup plan.
To prevent an overload
- To prevent an overload on the system while power is being restored, take these steps:
- Turn off every inside light except one.
- Turn down your thermostat.
- If the outage lasts more than 60 minutes, turn off your electric water heater.
- Make sure your kitchen range is off, both the surface and the oven.
- Turn off all unnecessary appliances and unplug sensitive electronic equipment.
- When power comes back on, slowly switch your appliances and lights back on and gradually return your thermostat to its normal setting.
During a power outage
- Only use flashlights for emergency lighting. Candles can cause fires.
- Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Most food requiring refrigeration can be kept safely in a closed refrigerator for several hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for about four hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours.
- Put on layers of warm clothing if it is cold outside. Never burn charcoal for heating or cooking indoors. Never use your oven as a source of heat. If the power might be out for a prolonged period, plan to go to another location (the home of a relative or friend or a public facility) that has heat to keep warm.
- Turn off or disconnect appliances and other equipment in case of a momentary power “surge” that can damage computers and other devices. Consider adding surge protectors.
Stay away from downed power lines
Mother Nature isn’t always kind to power lines. Winter winds, snow and ice often prove to be too much for utility poles and power lines. If you see a downed power line or utility pole, contact Nodak Electric immediately.
Do not go near the line or the pole. Just because it’s on the ground doesn’t mean it’s safe to approach.
to report an outage
Because power outages can’t be totally eliminated, Nodak Electric offers these steps to follow if an outage occurs:
- Confirm the outage. Check your own fuses and circuit breakers first.
- Check with a neighbor to confirm if he or she is also experiencing an outage before you call the cooperative. This will help your cooperative determine the extent of the outage.
- Call the cooperative. If the outage is widespread, the phone lines may be busy, but keep trying. Your cooperative will send a line crew to find the problem and restore power as quickly as possible.
If you have additional questions about outages, please call Nodak Electric at 701-746-4461.