CHICAGO, March 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ComEd is closely monitoring and preparing for the winter storm expected to hit Northern Illinois early Tuesday morning. The storm is expected to bring 7-11 inches of snow, with wind gusts of up to 35 mph. Coupled with high wind gusts, heavy, wet snow can cover tree limbs, electric delivery equipment and power lines, and cause power outages. ComEd is readying its crews and equipment to respond quickly in the event of outages.
"This storm is expected to bring our largest snowfall this winter," said Terence Donnelly, executive vice president and chief operating officer. "ComEd is already making preparations to ensure that we are staffed and equipped to respond quickly to possible outages."
ComEd urges customers to contact the utility immediately if they experience a power outage. To report an outage, customers can call 1-800 EDISON1 (1-800-334-7661), or report it through the web site at ComEd.com. Spanish-speaking customers should call 1-800-95-LUCES (1-800-955-8237).
Customers can text OUT to 26633 (COMED) to report their outage and receive restoration information, and can follow the company on Twitter @ComEd or on Facebook at Facebook.com/ComEd to stay up to date on the latest ComEd storm restoration information. ComEd also has an interactive outage map on its website, which allows customers to easily find information on the location and size of outages and get estimated power restoration times. Additionally, ComEd has introduced a mobile app for iPhone and Android® smart phones that gives customers the ability to report power outages and manage their accounts.
Public safety is paramount during storms and ComEd encourages the public to remember to take the following precautions:
- If you encounter a downed power line, immediately call ComEd at 1-800-EDISON1 (1-800-334-7661) or access our website at ComEd.com and report the location. Spanish-speaking customers should call 1-800-95-LUCES (1-800-955-8237).
- Never approach a downed power line. Always assume a power line is energized and extremely dangerous.
- Check on elderly and other sensitive family members and neighbors to ensure their safety, and in the event of an extended outage, assist them in reaching an alternate location.
ComEd also offers the following tips to help customers safely prepare their homes for winter weather, manage their energy usage and reduce electricity costs.
- Inspect the caulking and weather-stripping around all windows, doors and openings for utility services, replacing as necessary. Making these improvements could result in savings of up to 20 percent on annual heating bills.
- Have home heating systems cleaned and inspected by a professional each year to ensure safety and optimum efficiency. Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure proper functioning.
- Keep three feet of space between space heaters and any surfaces that could burn, including walls and bedding. Choose space heaters with automatic shut-off in case they tip over.
- Reverse the rotation of ceiling fan blades, which should spin clockwise at low speed during the winter months, so the warm air that has risen can be re-distributed around the room.
- Visit ComEd.com and select "Use My Energy Tools" beneath the "My Usage" tab. Customers can evaluate past energy usage and learn about more ways to keep their homes energy efficient.
Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd) is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation's leading competitive energy provider, with approximately 6.6 million customers. ComEd provides service to approximately 3.8 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state's population.