From Illinois Business Journal news services
COLLINSVILLE — Ameren Illinois crews are out in full force today, tackling repairs brought on by the late-winter storm.
More than 500 Ameren Illinois employees and contractors are repairing and assessing damages throughout the central and southern Illinois territory in the wake of a massive snow and wind storm that affected a large portion of the service territory. Additional restoration crews are coming from Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan and Kansas.
Ameren Illinois is currently experiencing widespread damage to its infrastructure including reports of almost 100 broken or leaning poles, and 300 downed wires.
“Most of the damage is caused by heavy snow building up on our lines,” said Ron Pate, senior vice president of Operations and Technical Services, Ameren Illinois. “This buildup creates a sail effect, and strong winds force the lines to bounce together. This can result in damaged lines, broken cross arms or snapped poles. Unfortunately, continuing strong winds are causing ongoing damage to our system.”
Ameren Illinois offers the following tips:
• Call Ameren Illinois at (800) 755-5000 to report an outage, or log onto our website at AmerenIllinois.com
• Stay away from downed power lines. Call Ameren Illinois at the same number as soon as possible to report a downed line or natural gas odor.
• Detailed safety and outage information is available AmerenIllinois.com, on Facebook and Twitter
• Sign up for outage alerts to receive text or email restoration updates after you report your outage. Learn more at Ameren.com/alerts.
• If your electric service is interrupted, be sure to unplug or protect sensitive computer and electronic equipment with a high-quality surge protector.
“Restoration estimates will be provided to customers who report their outage once the snow and wind subside and the full extent of the damage is known,” said Pate.”We can assure our customers that our crews are working as quickly and safely as possible.”