When you call CEC to report an outage, your outage information and any damage you report is entered into our outage management system. This information is reviewed and summarized along with information from other members who've reported outages. This helps us to map and pinpoint the trouble areas and efficiently dispatch repair crews.
Most of the time that your power goes out we are able to restore it within a few hours. But when a major storm causes widespread damage, longer outages may result. Co-op line crews work long, hard hours to restore service safely to the greatest number of members in the shortest time possible. Here’s what’s going on if you find yourself in the dark.
1. High-Voltage Transmission Lines
Transmission towers and cables that supply power to transmission substations (and thousands of consumers) rarely fail. But when damage occurs, these facilities must be repaired before other parts of the system can operate.
2. Distribution Substation
Each substation serves hundreds or thousands of consumers. When a major outage occurs, line crews inspect substations to determine if problems stem from transmission lines feeding into the substation, the substation itself, or if problems exist down the line.
3. Main Distribution Lines
If the problem cannot be isolated at a distribution substation, distribution lines are checked. These lines carry power to large groups of consumers in communities or housing developments. SAFETY TIP: If a power line falls across or near your vehicle while you are in it, stay inside until help arrives!
4. Tap Lines
If local outages persist, supply lines, called tap lines, are inspected. These lines deliver power to transformers, either mounted on poles or placed on pads for underground service, outside businesses, schools, and homes.
5. Individual Homes
If your home remains without power, the service line between a transformer and your residence may need to be repaired. Always call to report an outage to help line crews isolate these local issues.
We begin our restoration at the point where the power feeds into CEC's system. This could be on a transmission line, at a substation or on a main distribution line. After these have been repaired, the crews then work on remaining outage problems. Crews correct the trouble in areas that serve the greatest number of members first and work until electricity is restored to each member's home.