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Gibson Electric still restoring power in area

Gibson Electric still restoring power in area

Posted: Thursday, April 21, 2011 9:01 pm

Gibson Electric Member-ship Corp. crews, with the help of neighboring crews, have restored service to 9,500 of the 12,000 customer-owners who lost power when severe storms blew through the area Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning.
Unfortunately, Gibson EMC was not able to complete service restoration Wednesday, leaving about 2,500 customers without power.
“Our employees have given it a strong effort. They’ve put in more than 20 hours straight,” said Dan Rodamaker, Gibson EMC president and chief executive officere. “But they hate to go home knowing that some of our customers are still without power.”
Barry Smith, Gibson EMC’s vice president of operations, agreed.
“It goes against the grain to leave the lights out,” he said. “Still, there are times when we have to call it a day. Our employees’ safety depends on it.”
“We trust our customers will understand and hope they know that we will get their power restored as quickly as we safely can,” Rodamaker added.
Gibson EMC crews and those from Pickwick Electric Cooperative, Fayetteville Public Utilities, Hickman-Fulton County (Ky.) Rural Electric Cooperative Corp. and Standard Electric resumed service restoration at daylight today.
Gibson EMC estimates around 30 of the co-op’s electric poles were downed and, in many cases, trees were entangled with the electric lines. Clearing an area is often necessary before repairs can be made or new lines can be constructed.
Safety cautioned
Safety is a strong concern. Gibson EMC urges customers to exercise extreme caution when connecting generators.  To protect yourself and others, follow these guidelines:
• Plug appliances directly into the generator or use a heavy outdoor rated extension cord. The extension cord should be rated in watts or amps at least equal to the sum of the connected appliance loads.
• Never connect the generator to the household wiring, as this can back feed along the power lines and electrocute anyone coming in contact with them, including lineworkers making repairs.
• Finally, be sure to treat all electric lines as though they are energized. Downed electric lines are extremely hazardous. Do not touch or even go near downed lines or tree limbs that have fallen onto power lines. If you see a downed line, call your local Gibson EMC customer service center and report it immediately.
Published in The Messenger 4.21.11

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