During An Outage
Report Your Outage – Call (503) 397-1844
Your phone call helps us to determine the extent and location of outages so we can restore power quickly. When you call, please be prepared with the following information:
- Your phone number.
- Your name.
- The location of the outage.
- A description of the problem.
Unplug Electronic Equipment
Unplug your electronic equipment, and turn off electric furnaces and water heaters at the breaker. This will help prevent overloading the system when the power is restored, which can cause secondary outages. When the power comes back on, turn items on at the breaker one at a time, in 30-minute intervals.
Turn off and unplug items such as:
- DVD players and VCRs
- Refrigerators and freezers
- Laundry machines
- TV sets
- Microwave Ovens
Leave One Porch Light On
This will let our repair crews know when your service has been restored. Leave one lamp on inside your home so you’ll know also.
Keeping Food During an Outage
Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Your refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours if it is unopened.
Food will stay frozen for about 2 days in a full freezer; one day in a freezer that is less than half full. It helps to cover freezers with blankets and quilts. Keep the door closed and use dry ice to keep food frozen.
Buy dry or block ice to keep your refrigerator as cold as possible if the power is going to be out for a prolonged period. 50 pounds of dry ice should keep an 18 cubic foot, fully-stocked freezer cold for two days. Wear gloves when handling dry ice, and place it on cardboard in the freezer rather than directly on food packages.
Food may be refrozen if it still contains some ice crystals. If in doubt, throw it out.
Use a thermometer in your refrigerator. Remember pork, poultry, fish and ground meat spoil quickly at room temperature above 40 degrees. Other foods that spoil quickly include: custards, creamed foods or any food containing mayonnaise.
Here are detailed instructions on keeping food safe during outages.
Staying Warm During Winter Outages
If the power goes out during cold weather, follow these guidelines to keep warm:
- Gather everyone in one room where there is an alternative heat source such as a wood stove.
- Dress in loose layers of clothing.
- If the temperature in your home drops below 55°F, open faucets slightly so they constantly drip to prevent water pipes from freezing.
- Never leave candles unattended. Keep them secure and away from small children and animals.
- Never use a gas range for room heating.
- Never use charcoal to heat or cook indoors.
- Never use gasoline or other flammable liquids to start a fire. Always keep a screen around a fireplace, and don’t close the damper while ashes are still hot.
- Remember, a fuel-burning heater, such as a kerosene heater, requires proper ventilation to prevent buildup of harmful fumes.
If You Have a Generator
If you have access to a generator, operate it safely. We recommend using a GenerLink transfer switch, which automatically disconnects your home from the power grid and connects it to your generator in an outage. Call (503) 397-8155 to speak with our Energy Experts for more information.