City Light Crews Prepare for Approaching Wind Storm

Seattle City Light is preparing its crews for a storm that is expected to bring strong winds to the Puget Sound area Friday morning.

Seattle City Light is preparing its crews for a storm that is expected to bring strong winds to the Puget Sound area Friday morning, April 2.

The National Weather Service issued a High Wind Advisory with a forecast for sustained winds of 35 mph, gusting up to 55 mph. A mild winter that encouraged trees to grow leaves earlier also means more of a sail effect that could pull down branches or trees into power lines.

“A storm like this is likely to cause power outages,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “Our crews are ready to respond and restore service as quickly as possible, but it is always important for all of us to have an emergency preparedness kit on hand with enough food and supplies to last your family for at least three days.”

Other items to include in an emergency kit are a hand-crank or battery-operated flashlight and radio, fresh batteries, a survival blanket, a first aid kit, pocket tissues and hand sanitizer wipes. For a checklist, go to www.takewinterbystorm.org

City Light also reminds customers to be safe. Downed lines can be dangerous.

Here’s what customers can do if they experience a power outage:

* Do not go near any downed wire. Wires should always be assumed to be “live” and dangerous. If someone seeks a downed wire, they should call (206) 706-0051;

* Do not use a barbecue grill or generator inside the house or in a garage that is attached to the house. Do not use a grill or generator near a home air intake vent or near windows;

* Do not use fossil fuel burning auxiliary heating sources;

* Know how to manually override electric garage doors, security doors and gates;

* Have a land line phone or fully charged cell phone available – cordless phones won’t work when the power is out;

* Unplug electrical appliances if the power goes out so that when the power comes back on, there won’t be a surge that could damage sensitive electronic equipment;

* Use battery-powered flashlights – not candles or oil lamps;

* Close doors, windows, curtains, and unused fireplace dampers to retain heat if there is an outage.

Seattle City Light is the ninth largest public electric utility in the United States.  It has the lowest cost customer rates of any urban utility, providing reliable, renewable and environmentally responsible power to nearly 1 million Seattle area residents.  City Light has been greenhouse gas neutral since 2005, the first electric utility in the nation to achieve that distinction.