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Con Edison Media Relations
October 27, 2012
1:15 p.m.


Utility Reminds Customers to Put Safety First

NEW YORK – Con Edison is preparing for the possibility that Hurricane Sandy will cause damage to both its overhead and underground energy-delivery equipment, and is urging its customers to take safety precautions.

The hurricane's fierce winds are likely to topple trees into overhead lines and transformers, causing customers to lose power.

The company is also preparing for the possibility that it will have to shut down underground electrical distribution equipment if the storm surge floods low-lying areas, such as parts of lower Manhattan.  Shutting down underground equipment can avoid extensive damage and allow company crews to restore power to customers more quickly.  The company may have to curtail steam service to buildings in flooded areas as well.

Forecasts show that tidal surges associated with this storm on Monday, and especially Tuesday, could be worse than Hurricane Irene's last year.

Con Edison will have extra crews ready to respond to any problems that occur with the electric, gas and steam systems caused by the storm.  Thousands of company employees and field crews will be working around the clock to restore power.  The company has also secured nearly 500 outside utility contractors to assist with storm restoration, and is working to secure additional mutual aid from utilities in other states.

Customers can report downed power lines, outages, and check service restoration status by computer or mobile device at They also can call 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633)When reporting an outage, it is helpful if customers have their Con Edison account number available, if possible, and report whether their neighbors also have lost power. Customers who report outages will be called by Con Edison with their estimated restoration times as they become available.

The company is advising its customers to pay close attention to reports from city and municipal officials. Con Edison will continue to provide updates through the media as the storm moves closer.

In addition, important information also will be posted on the company's Web site,

For instructions on how to report an outage, click here:

In the event the hurricane hits our area, Con Edison offers the following safety tips:

  • If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them. Treat all downed wires as if they are live. Never attempt to move or touch them with any object. Be mindful that downed wires can be hidden from view by tree limbs, leaves or water.
  • Report all downed wires to Con Edison and your local police department immediately. If a power line falls on your car while you're in it, stay inside the vehicle and wait for emergency personnel.
  • If your power goes out, turn off all lights and appliances to prevent overloaded circuits when power is restored.
  • Check to make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios are working.  Also, make sure you have a supply of extra batteries. Weather updates and news on power outages can be heard on most local radio and television stations.
  • Avoid opening your freezer to see if food is still frozen. Every time you open the door, room-temperature air enters and speeds the thawing process. Most fully loaded freezers will keep food frozen for approximately 36 to 48 hours; half-full freezers will keep food frozen for approximately 24 hours.

The company is in constant communication with the New York City Office of Emergency Management and the Westchester County Department of Emergency Services and company personnel are working closely with city and municipal emergency officials.


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