Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association (PVREA) is preparing for the Winter Storm Warning that is in effect in Larimer County until Thursday, January 5, 11 a.m. A winter storm warning means significant amounts of snow and ice are expected or occurring. All PVREA crews and vehicles are on standby and will be ready to be dispatched to restore power if outages occur.
“When we learn of weather that can potentially damage equipment and cause power outages, PVREA goes through a storm preparation checklist where we gas up vehicles, load up trucks with parts and review storm preparation with our crews and office staff,” PVREA Line Superintendent Larry Binder said.
With heavy snow accumulation predicted, PVREA urges members to be prepared for potential power outages, especially in higher elevations the Cooperative serves. Members should prepare their homes for a power outage - keep a fully charged cell phone, stay inside and dress warm, and close off unneeded rooms to stay warm if an outage lasts several hours.
Heavy snow accumulation can oftentimes cause power lines to come down, creating a hazardous situation. Travelers should also be warned should they come into contact with a power pole in an accident, a power line can come down. Any downed power lines should be assumed energized and extremely dangerous. Stay away from downed wires or damaged electric equipment. Touching energized wires can lead to injuries and death. If you see downed wires, call PVREA or local law enforcement immediately. If there is a downed power line on or near your vehicle, stay in the vehicle until help arrives.
During an outage PVREA crews work to restore power to the largest number of people first. After transmission and distribution lines are fixed, the Co-op’s crews then fix problems in smaller neighborhoods or problems at individual homes. When there are issues with transmission lines, the co-op’s outage management system also allows engineers to redirect electric or “back-feed” from other substations to get the lights back on faster.
During outage situations, PVREA members can stay updated by visiting the Cooperative’s Facebook and Twitter pages and website. Outages should be reported by calling the Cooperative at 1-800-432-1012 or through their online account. Additional safety information and storm preparation can be found on the Cooperative’s website at www.pvrea.com.