CHICAGO, July 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Working overnight and throughout the day, ComEd crews have restored power to virtually all 145,000 customers affected by the powerful storm that hit northern Illinois on June 30.
ComEd mobilized more than 374 crews to repair downed power lines and damaged equipment and expects to have the remaining isolated outages in heavily damaged areas restored by Saturday morning. Full staffing of crews will continue around the clock until remaining outages are restored.
"We recognize that power outages disrupt the lives and businesses of our customers," said Anne Pramaggiore, president and chief operating officer, ComEd. "ComEd crews are working hard to restore service to customers affected by the storm as quickly and safely as possible."
Hardest hit areas include Waukegan, Zion, Beach Park, and Winthrop Harbor in the northern suburbs, as well as Alsip, Crestwood and Harvey in the southern suburbs.
Most damaging were the hurricane-force winds, hail and lightning. Sustained winds were clocked with gusts in excess of 95 miles per hour.
ComEd prioritizes outage restoration to ensure public safety first such as police and fire, then hospitals and other critical customers. Next, ComEd restores feeders, which allows us to return power to large numbers of customers at one time, followed by smaller service restorations and individual outages.
Public safety is paramount.
- Customers should be aware that ComEd may not know that they are without power and should call ComEd at 1-800-EDISON1 (1-800-334-7661) and report the outage. Spanish-speaking customers should call 1-800-95-LUCES (1-800-955-8237).
- Anyone encountering a downed power line is urged to immediately call ComEd and report the location.
- Never approach a downed power line. Always presume a power line is energized and extremely dangerous.
- Check on elderly and other sensitive family members and neighbors to ensure their safety and make alternate arrangements, as it may be some time before their power is restored.
ComEd also offers the following suggestions for customers experiencing a prolonged outage:
- Turn off all appliances including your furnace, water heater, and water pump.
- Leave a lamp on so you can know when power has been restored.
- Keep freezer and refrigerator doors closed and open them only when necessary.
Customers who are on medical support equipment are strongly encouraged to evacuate to a place where they can be comfortable and safe.
Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd) is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), one of the nation's largest electric utilities with approximately 5.4 million customers. ComEd provides service to approximately 3.8 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state's population.