United Power prides itself on providing reliable electric service, but there are times due to weather or other factors that power can be interrupted. Nobody likes power outages and United Power understands that they can be especially worrisome for members with special medical needs. If you use life-sustaining medical equipment that depends on 24/7 electricity for operation such as oxygen generators, kidney dialysis machines and respirators, it’s important for you to put together a power outage plan before a disaster.
Have a Back-up Plan for Prolonged Power Outages
No utility can guarantee uninterrupted service, and following a disaster your power could be out for several days. If you use electric dependent medical equipment, we recommend you have a back-up plan for responding to a power outage. The following tips are good considerations when you are making your power outage plan:
- Before disaster strikes, register with United Power. A “medical alert flag” will be placed on your account so United Power can contact you in an unplanned outage and before a planned outage.
- If you cannot be without power, plan for how you will obtain power backup. If possible, have a backup battery, generator, or alternate electrical resources. Explore newer solutions, and also consider foot pumps and other simple tools that might suffice when nothing else works.
- For extended outages, you may want to have a plan for evacuation to another location.
- Keep a full charge on devices that will maintain power to your equipment during electric outages.
- Install a special alarm so someone will be awakened if electric service is interrupted during the night.
- Purchase extra batteries for battery-operated medical or assistive technology devices.
- Sign up to receive emergency emails and text messages from your local government alert system.
- Plan for medications that require refrigeration.
How United Power can Help Members with Electricity-Dependent Medical Devices:
- Members can request that United Power ‘flag’ your account with a Medical Alert priority. A ‘Medical Alert flag’ on your account indicates to our employees that someone in your home has special medical needs. A Medical Alert designation does not guarantee against power interruptions, but be assured that in the event of a power outage, our crews are working to restore service as quickly as possible.
- Keep your contact information associated with your electric account up-to-date so United Power can reach you in the event of an outage or emergency.
How You can Help United Power Restore Power Quickly & Safely:
- Always report your power outages or electric emergencies. Do not assume we know about your outage. Report outages via phone or through our website.
- If you use a generator for back-up power, please notify United Power and use appropriate safety precautions to protect our crews who could be working on the line.