Those without Power Asked to Call Ameren Illinois Utilities
MARION, Ill., May 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Another round of thunderstorms and high winds today is presenting a new challenge for the 1,000 linemen at work to restore service to the 13,700 Ameren Illinois Utilities (AIU) customers in Jackson and Williamson counties who are still without lights.
A workforce of field and support personnel that peaked at 2,200 have succeeded in getting the power flowing to about 55,100 customers since the inland hurricane ripped through Southern Illinois. Outages peaked at 68,800 immediately after the storm.
The Ameren Illinois Utilities estimate that most customers will have lights by late tonight, though it is anticipated scattered outages will persist into Thursday. Furthermore, a new round of severe weather could cause new outages in Southern Illinois as well as in other parts of the state.
"We are devoting our resources to restoring electrical service to our customers in a two county area served by more than 100 electric distribution circuits," said Ron Pate, AIU vice president of Regional Operations. "These final outages often are the most difficult to restore because of extensive damage and remote locations. However, we want to assure everyone that we are not resting until everyone has lights."
Customers who are still without electrical service are asked to call AIU: 1-888-789-2477 (AmerenCIPS), 1-800-755-7000 (AmerenIP) and 1-888-672-5252 (AmerenCILCO).
In addition, Pate said as many as 1,000 AIU customers may need to make repairs to the facilities they own, such as the meter base, weatherhead or point of attachment. This work should be performed by a professional electrical contractor. These repairs must be completed before service can be safely restored. A detailed explanation of this work is available at IllinoisOutage.com.
AIU is reminding customers that it may be necessary to temporarily turn the power off to some customers during the service restoration process. This is done so crews can safely complete necessary repair work. Power will be restored as soon as the work is safely completed.
Pate also said the AIU Emergency Operations Center is keeping a close watch on developing weather conditions in Southern Illinois and around the state. AIU is taking the necessary steps to quickly respond to any service challenges additional severe weather may cause.
The Ameren Illinois Utilities also are working with mayors to determine how long the temporary AIU Customer Outreach Service Centers should remain open. The center located in the Herrin City Hall will close at 3:00 p.m. today. The other centers will remain open until further notice. Those centers are located at: Murphysboro Fire Station, 219 N. 10th St., Southwest entrance Illinois Centre Mall, Marion; Carbondale City Hall, 200 S. Illinois Ave., and Community Food Pantry, 121 W. Illinois Ave., Carterville.
Up-to-date information on the electrical service restoration effort as well as safety advice and weather reports is available at IllinoisOutage.com. Also, the Web site features photos and videos of the storm damage and service restoration effort.
The Ameren Illinois Utilities (AmerenCIPS, AmerenCILCO, AmerenIP) have been providing safe, reliable energy delivery service for more than a century. The Ameren Illinois Utilities deliver energy to 1.2 million electric and 840,000 natural gas customers in more than 1,200 communities within a 43,700-square-mile service territory.
SOURCE: Ameren Illinois Utilities