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Empire District Electric Company urges customers to be prepared - KOAM TV 7

Empire District Electric Company urges customers to be prepared for outages as ice melts

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NEWS RELEASE ISSUED DECEMBER 23, 2013 BY THE OFFICE OF EMPIRE DISTRICT ELECTRIC COMPANY

The Empire District Electric Company urges customers to be prepared for outages as ice melts

JOPLIN, MO – December 23, 2013 – Ice accumulations over the weekend caused scattered outages across the Empire system and additional outages may occur. Outage numbers briefly peaked between 4,000 and 5,000 customers on Saturday. As of this morning, fewer than 300 customers are impacted.

Over the next few days ice will be melting. As ice slides from power lines and trees, movement occurs along the lines and trees which creates the potential for additional damage to the electrical system. Customers are urged to be prepared for possible outages as well as the hazards of falling ice.

Empire crews will continue to respond to outages as they occur over the holiday and Contact Center representatives will be available to receive outage reports. If customers experience an outage, they should call 800-206-2300.

When calling, customers can report their outage more quickly by using the automated reporting system and having their 11-digit location number, found on the back of their bill, or the phone number or social security number associated with the account. Outages may also be reported through the Outage Center page on Empire’s website.

Customers who have had their service entrance damaged or pulled away from their home, will need to have an electrician make repairs before Empire is able to safely reconnect service. Crews will respond over the Christmas holiday to reconnect customers ready to receive service after meter base repairs.

Downed Power Line Safety Tips

  • Stay away from power lines. They are bare wires and not insulated. Downed power lines may appear to be harmless, but could be energized and dangerous.
  • If a person or object is in contact with a power line, don’t touch the person, object, or line. The electric current could flow through to you. Call 911 and Empire District Electric Company immediately.
  • If your vehicle is in contact with a power line, stay inside the car. Warn others not to touch the car or the power line. If you must leave your vehicle, jump clear to avoid being in contact with the car and the ground at the same time.

For additional safety information, visit our Outage page at www.empiredistrict.com/outages.

Based in Joplin, Missouri, The Empire District Electric Company (NYSE: EDE) is an investor-owned, regulated utility providing electric, natural gas (through its wholly owned subsidiary The Empire District Gas Company), and water service, with approximately 216,000 customers in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. A subsidiary of the company provides fiber optic services. For more information regarding Empire, visit www.empiredistrict.com

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