At least one tornado and severe thunderstorms left downed wires, broken utility poles and many customers without lights Saturday evening, creating safety hazards in some portions of Central Illinois.
Ameren Illinois officials issued an immediate safety warning to all residents in the impacted areas to be on alert for downed electrical wires. Residents in areas without lights should not venture outdoors after dark.
When daylight returns, residents should stay away from downed wires. Furthermore, stay away from brush, downed trees and limbs and any debris that may conceal downed power lines.
If you see a fallen or sagging wire, assume that it is still energized and dangerous. Electric power lines can carry power even after being knocked to the ground. Stay away and warn others to do the same. Call Ameren Illinois (AmerenCIPS – 1-888-789-2477, AmerenCILCO – 1-888-672-5252, AmerenIP – 1-800-755-5000) to report downed wires.
Ameren Illinois has dispatched field personnel, who are working through the night to assess damage and restore service as quickly as possible. Approximately 13,700 customers were without lights at 12:00 a.m., June 6.
Customers planning to use a portable generator must first open the main breaker or remove the main fuses before connecting the generator to the electrical systems. Failure to do this could seriously injure utility crews working on outside power lines, and/or it could cause damage to a neighbor's property or the customer's own equipment. Customers should never use a portable generator indoors, including in a home, garage, basement, shed or partially-enclosed area – even with ventilation because of the threat of deadly carbon monoxide poisoning.
Outage information is available at www.IllinoisOutage.com. Users can find outages listed by zip code and by county. The Web site also includes safety and weather information.
Those using mobile devices are invited to visit www.Ameren.Mobi for outage information. This site is specially designed for mobile devices.
Ameren Illinois (AmerenCIPS, AmerenCILCO, AmerenIP) has been providing safe, reliable energy delivery service for more than a century. Ameren Illinois delivers energy to 1.2 million electric and 813,000 natural gas customers in more than 1,200 communities within a 43,700-square-mile service territory throughout Downstate Illinois.
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Contact: Leigh Morris, 1-217-424-6400