Con Edison Preparing As Tropical Storm Henri Heads Toward NYC Area With Force; Company Urging Customers To Be Safe
Fierce Winds, Heavy Rains and Possible Flooding Coming to the Region; Company Preparing a Full-Scale Response to Outages
Con Edison is closely monitoring Tropical Storm Henri and is preparing for possible damage that could cause outages in the company’s service area.
The company has secured 1,500 mutual aid workers to supplement its own crews in restoring outages starting Sunday morning.
The storm’s powerful winds are likely to topple trees and branches onto overhead lines, causing customers to lose service.
In addition, the pelting rain and tides could also bring flooding. Restoration of service due to flooding in the underground electric-delivery system involves several steps. Those steps include pumping water out of a facility, drying the equipment, testing the equipment, addressing any environmental concerns, and making sure the equipment can operate safely and reliably.
Con Edison urges members of the public to stay away from downed wires, as they may be live. If you see downed wires, report them to your local police department or Con Edison by calling 1-800-75-CONED. Do not touch downed wires with your hands or any object.
For your safety, Con Edison workers may guard downed wires until crews make repairs. Our personnel may be in unmarked cars but will always have Con Edison identification.
How to Report an Outage
The company has sent e-mails to customers to warn them of the storm and explaining that Con Edison will have extra crews on the job.
Con Edison is also sending text messages to customers reminding them to be prepared and to report an outage by simply replying OUT to the text. Customers can sign up for text alerts at coned.com/text.
Customers can also report outages and check service restoration status at conEd.com/reportoutage or with Con Edison’s mobile app for iOS or Android devices, or by calling 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633).
When reporting an outage, have your Con Edison account number available, if possible.
Customers who report outages will receive updates from Con Edison with their estimated restoration times as they become available.
The priority for restoration will be critical customer facilities that have an impact on the public, such as mass transit, hospitals, police and fire stations, and sewage and water-pumping stations. Crews will then prioritize repairs that will provide power to the largest numbers of customers as quickly as possible, then move on to restore smaller groups and individual customers.
Information on outages and restoration times is available on the Con Edison outage map.
Con Edison is setting up staging areas in New York City and Westchester County for personnel and equipment.
If the storm hits the region full force, the 12,500 women and men of Con Edison will work longer shifts to clear blocked roads, restore power, make equipment safe, answer customer inquiries, provide information to elected officials and the media, and perform other essential duties.
The additional workers coming to the area include line workers, tree crews, and others who will aid in the safe restoration of customers and address other service problems.
Depending on the severity of the storm, restoration could take multiple days.
In the event of major flooding, the company would have to wait for floodwaters to recede before workers could enter some facilities to assess damage.
As equipment is dried and becomes safe to energize, Con Edison will place it back in service.
- If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them. Report them to Con Edison and your local police department immediately.
- 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.
- Members of the public also should avoid transformers that are brought to the ground. The transformers are gray metal drums attached to the wires and poles.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installing and using a portable generator. Never plug a generator into a wall unit, use it indoors, or set it up outdoors near open home windows or air-handling vents.
- If a power line falls on your car while you’re in it, stay inside the vehicle and wait for emergency personnel.
- Exercise extreme caution when entering flooded basements. Water that comes into contact with energized electrical equipment can create dangerous conditions and cause serious injury.
- 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.
- Charge your cellphones and other mobile devices while you have power.
- Check to make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios are in working order. Make sure you have a supply of extra batteries.
The company is in contact with New York City Emergency Management and the Westchester County Department of Emergency Services to coordinate storm response if needed.