UI has doubled field crews, patrolling system and staging personnel across territory to restore power quickly and urges public to be safe and avoid damaged areas and downed lines
ORANGE, Connecticut — August 20, 2021 (11:30 a.m. EDT) — As Connecticut prepares for Hurricane Henri to bring heavy wind and rain to Connecticut, United Illuminating (UI) is ready and prepared. United Illuminating, an AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) subsidiary, prides itself on safely serving customers throughout Connecticut on a daily basis. To that end, the company has doubled the size of its field crews including line workers, tree trimming and removal and damage assessment teams in Connecticut in advance of the storm.
Customers are urged to begin preparing for the storm now as forecasters predict Henri to cycle between tropical storm and hurricane strength before entering the area early Sunday morning just east of United Illuminating’s service area. Winds will increase throughout Sunday and steady rain through Monday. This combination can cause tree branches, debris, and unsecured items to damage electrical poles, power lines and cause outages.
UI’s storm teams have been preparing for Henri throughout the week by readying onsite crews and equipment in addition to securing additional resources which will arrive over the weekend. After receiving their safety briefings crews will be pre-staged in strategic locations throughout the service territory, limiting travel to damaged locations.
Once Henri arrives, crews will begin working as soon as conditions safely allow. Restoration efforts will focus first on essential safety activities such as removing downed wires and working with municipalities to clear any blocked roads. As a reminder, never assume a downed wire is a dead wire. It’s never safe to touch a downed wire. Also, avoid any downed trees or tree limbs as you may not see wires tangled in them.
UI’s teams are coordinating with our town and city partners throughout the service territory and will remain in close contact throughout Henri to quickly and safely clear roads, address municipal restoration priorities and restore power to customers. Additionally, UI is reaching out to residential customers with critical medical conditions who rely on electric power to ensure they have access to necessary resources. Customers who have these needs and have not alerted the company are urged to please call UI as soon as possible at 800.722.5584 (800.7.CALL.UI).
After the storm, UI will continue providing updates to these and all customers on estimated restoration times.
UI advises customers to be prepared year-round for the possibility of weather-related outages, and to have a plan in case of an extended loss of service. Customers can find safety and readiness information, as well as other resources, at uinet.com.
Before a Storm:
- Sign up for Outage Alerts. Text “REG” to 839884 (TEXT-UI) to receive free text alerts if you lose service, along with for restoration updates. Visit uinet.com for additional alert options. Customers are encouraged to download the UI app from the Apple App Store and Google Play.
- Keep long-lasting LED flashlights and lanterns on hand, along with a battery-operated radio, fresh batteries, drinking water, non-perishable foods and prescription medications.
- Fully charge mobile devices and store emergency contacts in memory.
- Fuel vehicles and fill spare fuel tanks for generators.
Medical and Life Support Customers:
- Customers who rely on life-saving medical equipment should have a plan in case of a sudden or extended loss of service. UI medical and life-support customers should register in advance to ensure the company is aware of their needs. Call UI at 800.722.5584 (800.7.CALL.UI).
- Stay far away from downed wires and anything that may be in contact with them. Report downed wires and other electrical hazards to UI at 800-722-5584.
- If a downed wire comes in contact with your vehicle, stay inside, call 911 and wait for help. If you must get out because of fire or other danger, avoid making contact with the vehicle and the ground at the same time. Jump clear of the vehicle, land with your feet together, and hop away with both feet together, or shuffle away without lifting your feet. Don’t run or stride.
- Never step into a flooded basement or other room if water may be in contact with electrical outlets, appliances or cords.
- If you suspect a natural gas leak, call the emergency number listed on your gas company’s website. (For Southern Connecticut Gas, call 800.513.8898; for Connecticut Natural Gas, call 866.924.5325).
- Do not use a generator that plugs into your home’s electrical system unless it is connected via a transfer switch installed by a licensed electrician. Improperly connected generators can back-feed electricity into the outside grid and pose a danger to the public and to crews working to restore service.
- Carefully read and observe the instructions in your generator’s operating manual.
- Properly ground all portable generators.
- Never run a generator indoors, in an open garage, or near a window.
- Do not store fuel indoors or try to refuel a generator while it’s running.
Report an Outage:
- To report an outage, visit uinet.com or call 800.722.5584 (800.7.CALL.UI).
- Report outages using the company’s new mobile app, available from the Apple Store and Google Play.
- Report outages via UI’s mobile alerts system: text “OUT” to 839884 (TEXT-UI). Registration is required.
Additional storm readiness and safety information:
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About UI: The United Illuminating Company (UI) is a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc. Established in 1899, UI operates approximately 3,600 miles of electric distribution lines and 138 miles of transmission lines. It serves approximately 341,000 customers in the greater New Haven and Bridgeport areas of Connecticut. UI received the Edison Electric Institute’s Emergency Recovery Award in 2019 and 2021. For more information, visit uinet.com.
About AVANGRID: AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR): aspires to be the leading sustainable energy company in the United States. Headquartered in Orange, CT with approximately $38 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states, AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns and operates eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving more than 3.3 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates a portfolio of renewable energy generation facilities across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 7,000 people and has been recognized by Forbes and Just Capital as one of the 2021 JUST 100 companies – a list of America’s best corporate citizens – and was ranked number one within the utility sector for its commitment to the environment and the communities it serves. The company supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2021 for the third consecutive year by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit avangrid.com.
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