Holiday forecast for heavy, wet snow in Northwest makes preparation top priority

PORTLAND, Ore. —  While a White Christmas may be great for the memory book, the current forecasts calling for heavy wet snow and windy conditions over the holiday weekend in the Northwest should have you reaching for your family emergency plan as well.  

“Winter storms can cause issues that lead to power outages,” said Justin Bukartek director of emergency management at Pacific Power. “We are always prepared to respond with crews ready to repair damage as fast as possible to reduce the amount of time any customer is without service.”

To ensure that you are prepared for outages, it is important to maintain an Emergency Outage Kit that includes the following:

  • Flashlight
  • Battery-operated radio and clock
  • Extra batteries
  • Non-perishable foods
  • Manual can opener
  • Bottled water
  • Blankets

If a power outage occurs, Pacific Power encourages customers to first check their fuses and circuit breakers. If the power failure is not caused inside the home or business, customers should report the outage to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088, online or by texting OUT to 722797.

Get the App. The Pacific Power app for mobile devices can become invaluable during an outage. You can report and track an outage affecting you from your mobile device. The app is free and can be downloaded on the App Store or Google Play. 

Pacific Power suggests these safety precautions once a storm has hit:

  • Stay away from all downed power lines and utility lines. Even if the lines are not sparking, they could be energized and extremely dangerous. Call 911 immediately, then report it to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088.
  • Extensive rain may cause flooding or landslides. Be especially careful of any standing water or even soggy ground. A live down wire may seem to be a safe distance away, but it is still extremely dangerous due to wet conditions.
  • Don’t drive over downed power lines.