DENVER — With a potential to see damaging winds, with gusts between 60 and 75 mph, in the high country and along the foothills, Xcel Energy has increased the number of employees and contractors it can call on to quickly and safely repair any damage the wind might cause and get the lights back on if customers lose power during the storm.
Xcel Energy has detailed staffing and operational plans in place to make sure key employees, including line workers, are available and able to respond to outages that may occur due to severe weather. The additional crews will be available through the week, as the wind continues through Friday.
“We know wind gusts of more than 70 miles per hour can bring down power lines and damage power poles,” said Mark Newby, control center and trouble operations director, Xcel Center-Colorado. “This is why we plan ahead to have crews ready to respond quickly to any damage or power outages that may occur. We understand the inconvenience power outages cause our customers and appreciate their patience.”
Report your outage
Customers can help Xcel Energy get a jump on power restoration by reporting outages. Customers have several ways to report their outage.
- Xcel Energy mobile app available on iOS and Android
- Online at xcelenergy.com/out
- Text ‘OUT’ to 98936 to report an outage, or text STAT to the same number to check the status of a power outage.
- Call 1-800-895-1999 and follow the prompts—the automated phone reporting system lets customers report outages in less than 60 seconds. Once the cause of the problem is identified, the system or an Xcel Energy representative will provide customers with an estimated restoration time.
If outages occur, it’s important for customers to have access to the most recent updates about their power restoration. Customers can stay informed by visiting the Xcel Energy website or by downloading the mobile app available on iOS and Android.
Additionally, the website hosts an outage map that displays information on the number of customers out and anticipated time for restoration. Customers can also stay informed by following Xcel Energy on Facebook and Twitter.
Other ways customers can prepare, stay safe
Stay away from downed power lines. Always assume an electric line, even one that is on or near the ground, is energized and therefore dangerous. Never, under any circumstance, touch or move a downed power line. If you come across a downed power line, leave the area and report it immediately by calling 1-800-895-1999.
Build a home emergency kit. Xcel Energy recommends assembling an easily accessible kit that can be used in the event of a power outage.
Useful items may include:
o Xcel Energy phone numbers - 1-800-895-1999 for residential or 1-800-481-4700 for business
o Battery-powered radio or television
o Back up phone chargers
o A phone that does not require electricity
o Non-electric alarm clock
o Bottled water and nonperishable food
o Manual can opener
o First aid kit
o Extension cords (for partial outages)
o Manufacturer's instructions on how to manually open power-operated doors (e.g., garage
Heating safety. If using a space heater, take care to ensure safety as more than 65,000 home fires are attributed to heating equipment each year in the United States, according to the Electrical Safety Foundation International. When using a space heater, make sure the heater has the label showing it is listed by a recognized testing laboratory, and read the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels. Additionally, inspect heaters for cracked or broken plugs and connections; don’t use it if they are frayed, worn or damaged. Never leave a space heater unattended. Turn it off when leaving a room and don’t go to sleep with a space heater on. Additionally, Xcel Energy offers rebates and incentives to install energy efficient furnaces and insulation.
Observe food safety. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, food safety is directly related to the temperature of the food. To maintain refrigerator and freezer temperatures, keep doors closed as much as possible. A full freezer will stay at freezing temperatures for approximately two days and a half-full freezer approximately one day. Visit the USDA website for more information.