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February 2013
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CityLink Seattle

Power Outage Information Part of Seattle City Light’s Commitment to Customer Service



Your Seattle City Light is committed to providing the best customer service of any utility in the nation and keeping the lights on is a big part of that effort.

When a problem happens that causes a power outage, our commitment to customer service doesn’t change. We try to provide information about the outage quickly so our customers understand what happened, what we’re doing to fix it and how long that might take.

“Any power outage causes an inconvenience,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “By sharing information, we can reduce the amount of inconvenience and frustration for our customers.”

 

Photo of Superintendent Jorge Carrasco

Superintendent Jorge Carrasco

City Light provides outage information online 24-hours a day with our outage map, which draws data from a computerized outage management system. There’s even a version of the map that is enhanced for use on a mobile phone. You also can get information through our call center at (206) 684-3000 or the outage hotline (206) 684-7400. Customers who report an outage through the call center can ask for a call back when power is restored.

When outages affect large numbers of customers or major public facilities, City Light’s Communications and Public Affairs team will share information directly to customers through our Power Lines Blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts while also releasing information to area media.

A recent study by Atlanta-based Chartwell, a specialized service that helps utilities improve their customers’ experience, found that Seattle City Light was one of only four utilities in the country to provide three or more points of information in their outage messages. Idaho Power, Florida Power and Light, and We Energies in Wisconsin were the others.

The more points of information a utility provides in its outage communications messages, the greater a customer’s satisfaction, according to the study. Chartwell found the national average among utilities was two points of information in their outage messages.

“While the recognition as a national leader in outage communications is nice, we’re constantly looking for ways to improve our customer service,” Carrasco said.

“Enhancements such as the installation of a computerized outage management system, creation of the online outage map and the rollout of our mobile website and app are a few of the changes we’ve made in recent years to better serve you should your lights go out,” he said. “We’re also working hard to make sure you don’t need to use them very often.”