[NASHVILLE] – Electric co-ops across Tennessee today are preparing for a significant winter storm that is expected to impact the Volunteer State overnight and Friday.
“The threat of ice is something that we take seriously,” says Todd Blocker, vice president of member relations for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “Co-ops are closely monitoring forecasts and preparing crews and equipment to respond quickly and safely if outages occur.”
Snow and ice can break trees, poles and wires and cause widespread power outages. Co-ops crews will work to restore power, but there are a few things you can do to prepare you and your family.
Plan to use a safe alternate heating source, such as a fireplace or wood-burning stove during a power outage. These are great options to keep you and your loved ones warm, but exercise caution when using, and never leave the heating source unattended. If you are using gasoline-, propane- or natural gas-burning devices to stay warm, never use them indoors. Remember that fuel- and wood-burning sources of heat should always be properly ventilated. Always read the manufacturer’s directions before using.
The CDC recommends having several days’ supply of food that does not need to be cooked handy. Crackers, cereal, canned goods and bread are good options. Five gallons of water per person should also be available in the event of an extended power outage.
When an outage occurs, it usually means power lines are down. It is best not to travel during winter storms, but if you must, bring a survival kit along, and do not travel alone. If you encounter downed lines, always assume they are live. Stay as far away from the downed lines as possible, and report the situation to your local electric co-op.