10 a.m., Friday, Aug. 24, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
VAST MAJORITY OF AMEREN ILLINOIS UTILITIES CUSTOMERS EXPECTED TO HAVE POWER RESTORED BY END OF FRIDAY
More than 650 workers helping restore service from Monmouth to Ottawa
Peoria, Friday, Aug. 24, 2007 – The Ameren Illinois utilities expect a vast majority of its customers affected by a strong Thursday afternoon wind storm to have their power restored by the end of today.
At the storm’s peak, about 33,000 customers were without electricity. Particularly hard hit areas were between Warren and LaSalle counties, including Galesburg and surrounding communities. Just after dawn Friday, more than one-third of those customers had power restored.
The Ameren Illinois utilities expect that major repairs will be completed by midnight Friday, with work continuing through Saturday to restore service to individual customers. As of 9 a.m., about 20,000 customers remain without power.
Customers without service are advised to check their meter base and weather heads attached to their homes. If customers believe damage has occurred, they should not try to make repairs, but instead call a qualified electrician. Above all, they should use care in inspecting their electrical service.
The elderly and families with young children that are without electricity are advised to visit cooling centers in their communities, if extreme hot temperatures continue. In Galesburg, a cooling center is at the Galesburg Community Center, 150 E. Simmons. In Monmouth, a cooling facility is at the Strom Center, 211 South A Street. And a temporary cooling center has been established at the Kirkwood Fire Station, 405 E. Walnut.
In addition, the Ameren Illinois utilities advise its customers to check on neighbors, especially senior citizens, who may be without power. Some elderly people and those with certain medical conditions may not sense that indoor temperatures have reached dangerously high levels.
For additional outage numbers and other information as the restoration continues, customers can visit the Ameren Web site www.ameren.com, which carries near-real-time information on outage numbers in its “Storm Center.”
The Ameren Illinois utilities have brought in 650 line workers, tree trimmers and other field personnel from throughout and Illinois to restore power knocked out by a storm that carried multiple lightning strikes and winds estimated at up to 80 miles per hour.
The Ameren Illinois utilities serve 1.2 million electric and more than 800,000 natural gas customers in Illinois.