MLGW crews respond to unexpected storms Saturday evening
May 19, 2019
More than 15,000 without power during height of storm
Heavy rain and 59 mph winds moved into the Memphis and Shelby County area shortly after 8 p.m. Saturday evening knocking down utility poles and toppling trees, resulting in outages. Inside the I-240 loop and southwest Memphis were the hardest hit. At the storm’s peak, 15,182 customers were impacted.
There are trees, wires and poles down throughout Memphis and Shelby County. Troubleshooters are currently assessing damage. Bad weather is anticipated to continue through the night and tomorrow. Crews are working tonight and throughout the weekend, however, safety for employees will be a priority. MLGW crews will work quickly and safely to restore power over the weekend.
Important MLGW contact information for customers:
• Outage Reporting: 544-6500
• Emergency: 528-4465 (This number should be treated like 911. Gas leaks, electrical lines down.)
• Customer Care Center: 544-6549
• Online Outage Center: mlgw.com/home/outagecenter
Generator Safety Tips
Some customers may be using generators which are a great way to back up your power, but using one can be dangerous unless you follow these important safety tips:
Never use a generator indoors or in an enclosed area such as a garage. Generators emit toxic carbon monoxide from the engine exhaust.
A generator should only be operated in a well-ventilated and dry area, away from air intakes to the home. It should be protected from direct exposure to rain and snow, preferably under a canopy, open shed or carport.
Do not attempt to restore power to your entire house by plugging the generator into a wall outlet. The electricity produced by a generator cannot only ruin your home's wiring and start a fire, it can also feed back into the utility system and energize a line thought to be without power possibly killing utility workers trying to restore power. It can also cause damage to the generator when electric service is restored.
Handle fuel carefully. Turn the generator off prior to refueling. Gasoline, kerosene and other flammable liquids should be stored outside of living areas in properly labeled safety containers.
Turn off or disconnect all appliances prior to operating a portable generator. Once the generator is running, appliances powered by the generator can be turned on one at a time.
MLGW will not come out to check the generator connections. Customer must use an electrical contractor to ensure that generator is isolated from grid to eliminate backfeed.
MLGW is the largest three-service public power utility in the nation, serving more than 431,000 customers in Memphis and Shelby County.