5 Power Outage Myths You Need To Know

Mar 6, 2019

This winter, Mother Nature has brought us an unusual combination of weather that can only be described as, “Life in Missouri.” From winter weather warnings to severe weather all in the month of February, it’s easy to see why we need to be prepared year-round for severe weather.

March 3 – 9 is Missouri Severe Weather Preparedness Week and we’ve teamed up with the Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management to help you be severe weather aware and ready in case your power goes out.

Here’s five myths about severe weather and power outages that you need to know.

Myth: CU knows I don’t have power.

False! While we are in the process of converting to advanced meters, which gives us the ability to track outages, not all of our meters have this technology yet. If your power is out, you should always report your outage through Manage My Account or call us at 1-888-863-9001.

Has your phone number changed? Make reporting your outage by phone easier by updating your phone number either through Manage My Account or by calling customer service at 417-863-9000.

Myth: It doesn’t take long to replace a broken pole.

False! Depending on the amount and type of equipment on a pole, it can take at least four hours to replace the pole and any other damaged equipment. You can always keep an eye on outages on our outage map. You can get additional details about the outage in your area by clicking on the colored boxes on the map.

Myth: Severe weather always creates power outages immediately.

False! Severe weather can cause power outages right when it happens, but many times, damage may happen to equipment that doesn’t cause a complete failure. For example, lightning may strike a pole and damage a piece of equipment that we don’t know about, but you may not see the power outage until days later when it is a beautiful day and the piece of equipment finally fails from the damage it sustained from the storm.

Myth: CU knows exactly where the problem is causing the outage.

False! Our system helps us know a general area where the problem causing a power outage is located, but it still takes a CU employee to visualize the problem. During a storm, especially at night, this can take time as crews have to drive along the power lines, or walk to physically see where the damage is located.

Myth: My neighbor’s power is on so my power should be on.

False! Just because your neighbor has power, doesn’t necessarily mean your power will be back on, too. First, your neighbor may be on a different substation feeder. This means that your neighbor is getting their power from a different path and there is still a problem on the feeder serving your house. Second, there may be an issue specifically at your house that your own electrician will need to fix.

When severe weather strikes, it is important to always be severe weather aware. Make sure you have an emergency kit ready and know how to report your power outage in the event of one. For more information about Severe Weather Preparedness Week, visit weather.gov.