LOUISVILLE, Ky. - National Preparedness Month. Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company join the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and organizations across the country to educate and empower others to prepare for and respond to all types of emergencies.
Historic weather events that devastated our eastern and western Kentucky communities in the last year underscore the importance of this month and the response efforts that take place to help communities and individuals recover from major disasters. As part of National Preparedness Month, LG&E and KU encourage families and communities to plan ahead so they can be as ready as possible when disasters or emergencies strike.
How LG&E and KU constantly prepare:
Ongoing investments: For Kentucky's largest utilities, LG&E and KU, preparedness includes continuous maintenance and enhancements to the electric and natural gas systems, generation stations, and energy infrastructure that enables the utilities to provide safe, reliable service to customers whenever it's needed. In the LG&E and KU electric system alone, ongoing efforts have reduced the frequency and duration of power outages by 40% since 2011, excluding major events.
Mutual assistance partnerships: LG&E and KU maintain relationships, including four different electric and natural gas mutual assistance partnerships, that provide access to critical resources and hundreds of crews from more than 20 states when mobilizing for potential large-scale restoration efforts. LG&E and KU customers are always the utilities' top priority. The utilities take many factors into consideration, including the weather heading toward Kentucky, when allocating resources to other utilities in need and ensure ample resources are on hand for anything from routine maintenance to emergency situations.
Continuous training and safety measures: LG&E and KU continuously train employees, contractors and emergency responders on how to safely respond to situations involving electric and natural gas service. The utilities also offer an extensive online library of information for customers and community partners about electric and natural gas safety, the restoration process and general tips about what to do during an outage. Visit lge-ku.com/storm to access these resources.
How you can prepare:
While the type of emergency may affect how people, businesses, industries and agencies must prepare, the utilities offer the following tips:
Make a plan: Whether at home or work, develop an emergency plan involving each person at your location so you'll know how and where to meet, how you will contact each other and what to do in different situations.
Stock up and make a kit: Gather enough essentials for at least 72 hours, including necessary medicines, water, a crank-powered flashlight, first aid items, a battery-operated radio and extra batteries. Store stock-piled emergency supplies in one location, preferably in air-tight storage. You may have to evacuate at a moment's notice and take essentials with you. Make an emergency preparedness kit and make sure each member of the household or work location knows where it will be stored. Be sure to make a kit for your vehicle as well.
Keep informed: When power outages occur, LG&E and KU customers can use the utilities' mobile app to access and keep track of near real-time outage information on the utilities' online outage map. Customers can also use the app to report their outage and more.LG&E and KU customers can also sign up for outage texting to report an outage to 4LGEKU (454358) and to request status updates from their mobile device. After customers text OUTAGE and the location of the outage being reported has been confirmed, customers can text STATUS at any time to receive updates regarding when their service might be restored. Once power is back on, the customer will receive a text confirming service has been restored.
Practice prevention: LG&E and KU customers are also encouraged to help prevent a potential emergency by knowing in advance the important steps to follow to have underground utilities lines marked before doing excavation work. This starts by contacting Kentucky 811, a free statewide computer-operated communication system that provides a link between excavators and operators of underground utilities.
Not only is using Kentucky 811 the law, using the service helps to protect the public from emergencies, avoid costly repairs and fines, and guard against the potential for disrupting service to an individual or entire neighborhood. When lines are properly marked in advance, the odds for avoiding dig-in dangers improves by 99%.
If you suspect a natural gas leak ALWAYS leave the area immediately. Do not use the phone, switch a light on or off, strike a match or spend time looking for the source. Go to a neighbor's home or an area away from the odor and then call LG&E at 502-589-1444 (outside of Louisville at 800-331-7370) to report a potential gas leak.
Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company, part of the PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL) family of companies, are regulated utilities that serve more than 1.3 million customers and have consistently ranked among the best companies for customer service in the United States. LG&E serves 333,000 natural gas and 429,000 electric customers in Louisville and 16 surrounding counties. KU serves 566,000 customers in 77 Kentucky counties and five counties in Virginia. More information is available at www.lge-ku.com and www.pplweb.com.
The LG&E and KU Media