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Electricians offer safety tips for winter storm - KOAM TV 7

Electricians offer safety tips for winter storm

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Whenever there's a significant amount of ice in the forecast, there are also concerns about the possibility of power outages.  Electricians say whenever the electricity goes out, some people forget about safety for when the power comes back on.

It doesn't take much ice to bring down power lines.

"Quarter of an inch, and winds, could take them down," says Tom Sasser with All Current Electric.

And that's the reason why Sasser gets extra busy after an ice storm.

"It's good for business, but it's hard on other people," says Sasser.

"The most important thing for customers to remember is to be prepared," says Julie Maus with Empire District Electric.

Workers of Empire Electric say be ready just in case the electricity goes out.  Independent electricians say also have plans for when the electricity comes back on and the power flows irregularly.

"If it's 240 volts coming in to a house and it surges and it goes up to 300 volts, that's when things start popping and breaking," says Sasser.

Next thing you know, the fridge is anything but cool and the beloved big screen TV goes kaput.  Electricians say power surges are rare, but it's better to be safe than sorry by using a surge protector.

Different surge protectors are rated by how many volts they can handle.

"You can get 110 surge protectors that are just for appliances you can buy, plug in your TV's and etcetera," says Sasser.

But no matter how many surge protectors, or other safety precautions, there's still room for the inevitable.

"It's impossible to completely storm proof any electrical system," says Maus.

Click here for more tips on being prepared for a winter storm.  You'll also find an Empire Electric phone number for reporting power outages.
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