PORTLAND, Ore. — Extensive damage from last week’s ice, snow and wind event is slowing restoration efforts in the Willamette Valley, but with more than 400 personnel on the job, Pacific Power is making determined progress.
As of 4 p.m. today, more than 90 percent of impacted customers, over 74,000 homes and businesses, are now back in service. At times during the past few days upwards of 80,000 customers in western Oregon experienced service disruption due to the destructive ice storms.
“Restoration came quicker in the Portland area as most of the damage involved downed lines, we now have less than 300 customers without service in the area,” said Allen Berreth, vice president of operations. “The damage in the areas of Dallas, Stayton and Albany is far more extensive involving many cross arms and entire poles that needed replacement. This work is much more time consuming, but we have the crews and equipment to get everyone back online. Through this long slog our customers have shown extraordinary patience and we appreciate their understanding of the hard work our crews are doing to get power back on as safely and quickly as possible.”
The company released an interactive map where customers can view estimated times of restoration in the Willamette Valley by entering an address. The map is available at pacificpower.net/outages-safety/restoration-status.html.
Pacific Power encourages customers to report outages by calling 1-877-508-5088 or text OUT to 722797. Text STAT to 722797 to check the status of your outage.
To ease the inconvenience of power outages and assist crews in restoring power, Pacific Power suggests the following tips and safety precautions:
- 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 and report the outage to Pacific Power at 1-877-508-5088.
- Don’t drive over downed power lines.
- Maintain safe distances from workers. Repair work is being done under our COVID-19 safety protocols. Waves and acknowledgement are welcome, but please allow crews to do their work at an appropriate distance both for operational and COVID-19 safety.
- If there is damage to your service mast or weather head, where the powerline connects to your home or business, you will need to contact a licensed electrician for repairs before service can be restored. Our crews can only work on company-owned equipment.
- Check on your neighbors, especially those who may need special assistance. Also, check with others who have electricity, to see if you can visit.
- If you have power at this time, keep mobile devices charged so that may be used in an emergency. Before anything happens, download the Pacific Power app to your smart device so you can have information readily available.
- Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Most food requiring refrigeration can be kept safely in a closed refrigerator for several hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours.
- Remember your pets! Pets who spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the winter because keeping warm depletes energy.
- If you are using alternate heat or cooking sources, remember to allow plenty of ventilation. Never burn charcoal for heating or cooking indoors.
- If you are using a generator, make sure to follow all manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure the generator is outside and not near any household air intakes. Do not connect the generator directly to your breaker box as this can create a dangerous situation for crews working on the powerlines. Instead, plug essential appliances directly into the generator.