Make sure you and your home are prepared for freezing temps
Winters in the South are relatively mild — but every so often, a visit from Jack Frost catches many Mississippians off guard. Clarksdale Public Utilities stays prepared year-round to respond to inclement weather, and as temperatures continue dropping, CPU reminds customers to make sure they’re also prepared.
“Our main focus is keeping the power flowing so customers have heat and electricity when they need them most,” Curtis D. Boschert, CPU general manager. “CPU is prepared for winter, and there are steps our customers can take to ensure they are ready, too.”
While winter storms are uncommon in the Delta, they have caused widespread outages and infrastructure damage in the past. Materials like wood and metal become brittle in extremely cold weather, and the weight of ice and snow can make power lines and branches snap.
That’s why CPU works year-round clearing branches and trees from power lines — an effective strategy to reduce storm-related outages in all seasons. As part of its inclement weather program, CPU crews also conduct monthly line patrols to identify equipment problems and initiate repairs.
During widespread outages, CPU teams with contractors and other utilities to augment its workforce and is part of the Coahoma County Emergency Management Plan. CPU stocks extra supplies and equipment to support repair efforts and maintains updated contact information for local and state authorities in the event of emergencies.
CPU suggest that customers follow these tips to get ready for chilly weather:
• Maintain trees on your property to reduce risk factors such as limbs that could break off and damage your house or electrical lines and equipment.
• Winterize your home by insulating walls and attics and caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows.
• Clean chimneys and heating equipment and make sure they are inspected annually.
• Insulate pipes, especially exposed pipes, and allow faucets to drip a little during extreme cold to keep pipes from freezing solid.• Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they work. If you use a backup generator or a gas or wood-burning fireplace, detectors will keep your family safe by sensing odorless gas or smoke.
• Keep extra water on hand. It is recommended that households keep one gallon of water per person per day to last at least three days for drinking and sanitation, as well as a three-day supply of non-perishable food.
As always, CPU reminds customers to stay away from downed power lines and always practice situational awareness when working near power lines and electrical equipment.
“Keeping customers and crews safe is our top priority,” Boschert said. “As part of our Bright Future initiative, CPU is continuously looking for ways to improve our performance during normal operations and storm response efforts.”
More information about preparing for severe weather and staying safe during emergencies is available on the Coahoma County EMA website at http://www.coahomacounty.net/ema/.
Clarksdale Public Utilities is a municipally owned utility serving approximately 6,800 homes and businesses in Clarksdale, Mississippi. Its mission is to safely provide sustainable electric, water and wastewater services in a reliable and courteous manner by well-trained team members, committed to top quality, efficient operations, competitive rates and the vitality of the community.
Learn more at http://cdpu.net.