Con Edison, Ready for Heat and Storms, Has Tips for Staying Safe and Cool on the Fourth

New Yorkers are facing more heat and humidity combined with the likelihood of some rain and storms as we get ready for the holiday weekend, and as a result, Con Edison is reminding customers to take safety precautions and avoid any downed power lines while also offering some tips to help keep cool.

"Con Edison crews, meanwhile, are preparing to respond to any outages that occur due to rain or wind.

Customers can report downed power lines, outages and check service restoration status at www.conEd.com or by calling 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633). When reporting an outage, customers should have their Con Edison account number available, if possible, and report whether their neighbors also have lost power.

Customers also can download Con Edison’s new free iPhone and Android app, My conEdison, to report and check the status of a power problem, if needed; you can also view the company’s interactive online outage map.

Customers also can follow Con Edison on Twitter or like us on Facebook for general outage updates, safety tips and storm preparation information.

If outages occur, Con Edison crews will give priority to restoring service lines that will provide power to the most customers as quickly as possible, then move on to restore smaller groups and individual customers who are without power.

Here are some important 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 them or touch them with your hands or 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, disconnect or turn off appliances that would otherwise turn on automatically when service is restored. If several appliances start up at once, the electric circuits may overload.
  • Check to make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios are in working order. Make sure you have a supply of extra batteries.
  • Weather updates and news on restorations of electrical service can be heard on most local radio and television stations.
For more tips on storm preparation, go to www.conEd.com. The company is in close contact with the New York City Office of Emergency Management and the Westchester County Department of Emergency Services to coordinate storm response if needed.

Part of this weekend’s challenge also will be keeping cool. Staying cool doesn’t mean spending a lot of money. In fact, you can save on your electric bill by following Con Edison’s tips to use energy wisely:

  • Turn off air conditioners, lights and other appliances when not at home and use a timer to turn on your air conditioner about a half-hour before arriving home.
  • Make sure air conditioner filters are clean so the machines will run at peak efficiency.
  • Set thermostats no lower than 78 degrees. Each degree lower increases cooling costs by 6 percent.
  • If you have a room air-conditioning unit, close off the rooms not being used; if you have central air, block the vents in unused or vacant rooms.
  • To reduce heat and moisture in your apartment or home, run appliances such as ovens, washing machines, dryers and dishwashers in the early morning or late at night when it’s generally cooler outside. Use a microwave to cook, or barbecue outside, if possible.
  • Keep shades, blinds and curtains closed. About 40 percent of unwanted heat comes through windows. Simply drawing blinds and curtains, which act as a layer of insulation, can reduce heat in your apartment or home.
  • Try using fans instead of air conditioners, but be sure to leave your windows open for ventilation. Fans use as little as one-tenth the energy as air conditioners."