Spring: the Time To Prepare for Power Outages
Texas' spring thunderstorms commonly bring high winds and lightning, which can affect power systems and trigger power outages.
Texas-New Mexico Power, like other utilities, closely watches the weather and prepares to respond to storm-caused outages this time of year. Customers can do the same.
"This can be a very busy time of year for our company and its employees," TNMP President Neal Walker said. "We do our best to plan ahead of time for what the weather can do.
"We want to make sure customers we serve know what to do, too, and for them to know that we'll be on it when outages are reported."
- Occupants of homes and businesses should consider unplugging computers or other sensitive electronics if lightning is nearing the area.
- Hard-wired telephones should be avoided if lightning is in the area; it's better to stick to cordless phones and mobile phones.
- Customers should stay far away if they see that a power line is down, then call 911 (if there's a threat to public safety) and the power company.
- Portable generators should be run outside and well away from any buildings, and should be used only to power specific appliances – not entire homes or businesses.
More storm safety information is available from ready.gov/thunderstorms-lightning.
How customers can prepare for power outages
- Put the utility company's phone number in a convenient location.
- TNMP customers can call 888-866-7456 to report an outage or to hear an update on current outages.
- Have a power outage plan (which can be part of tornado or hurricane plans) that can include:
- checking flashlights or electric lanterns in advance.
- installing fresh batteries in flashlights and hand-held radios.
- charging phones, tablets, lanterns or hand-held video games in advance if heavy weather is forecasted.
- having snacks or drinks ready to go (but not in the refrigerator).
- Prepare a backup plan if someone in a home depends on powered medical equipment.
- Discuss with children in advance what a power outage means, particularly after dark.
How TNMP prepares to respond
- TNMP watches weather forecasts and prepares crews for outage work in areas that are expected to be affected.
- Plans can be implemented to quickly call in additional crews to assist, if needed.
- Crews focus first on fixing damage that is disrupting power for the most number of customers.
- Safety is strongly emphasized, so we will work carefully and deliberately.
- Restoration may be delayed in certain circumstances - if that's necessary to ensure public and / or employee safety.
TNMP is a transmission and distribution service provider that delivers power to about 230,000 homes and businesses on behalf of retail electric providers in Texas. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of PNM Resources.
Eric Paul: 409-949-5685