Tropical Storm Irma is on the way, but Volunteer Electric (VEC) is ready. Officials say VEC crews are on standby, their control center is set for storm, and their contract linemen are back from Texas and ready to help as needed. As VEC prepares for the high winds, they encourage all of their members to follow some basic storm safety tips:
During a storm:
1. Do not take a shower or bath. Water and copper tubing are excellent conductors of electricity.
2. Stay away from windows. A central location in the house in an area away from doors and windows is the safest.
3. If you power goes out, immediately report it to VEC and then avoid using the phone. (Phone lines may also conduct electricity.) You can use our SmartHub app on your smartphone to avoid using the landline completely. To download the app go to www.vec.org home page and click on the appropriate link for your smart phone at the bottom of the page.
4. Never touch downed power lines. Dial 911 or VEC immediately to ensure that the line is turned off so repairs can be made.
During a power outage:
* Report the outage immediately to VEC.
* Unplug major appliances to prevent a system overload when power is restored. Gradually plug in and turn on appliances after power is restored.
* Avoid opening your refrigerator and/or freezer. The appliance will keep food fresher longer if the door is kept shut.
* Use battery powered flashlights rather than candles whenever possible to avoid the threat of fire.