WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Con Edison and New York State Electric and Gas are preparing for potential power outages that may result from the impending Nor'easter expected on Thursday.
"It can be hard to tell in advance, but what generally causes outages is wind and snow can build up on branches and snap them onto power lines. Sometimes entire trees snap," said Allan Drury, a spokesperson for Con Edison.
Drury said that Con Ed is preparing crews to respond to any potential power outages, and is ready to call in outside contractors to help repair lines should outages be widespread.
"We're always in touch with the New York City OEM (Office of Emergency Management) and the Westchester County Emergency Management," Drury said.
Last week's snowstorm did not cause widespread outages in Westchester, where most power is delivered through overhead lines. Drury said that last week's storm mostly affected underground systems as a result of snow and ice melting and seeping underground.
"Based on the forecast, it is possible that there will be some power outages, particularly in the southeastern part of the state, so we are prepared for that, " said Clayton Ellis, a spokesperson for NYSEG. "We have folks across the state on high alert."
Con Ed customers can report outages by calling 1-800-75-CONED, or through the company's website or mobile app. NYSEG customers can report outages by calling 1-800-572-1131, or through the website. Residents should make sure that their cell phones are fully charged in the event of a power outage, and have flashlights and extra batteries on hand in case the lights go out. If the power does go out, disconnect or turn off appliances to prevent surges once the power is restored.
If you see a downed wire, you should report it to both your power company and your local police department. Drury and Ellis both advised residents to stay away from downed wires.
"There's no reason to be anywhere near a downed wire," said Ellis. "We always say that even a wire that appears dead can still be deadly. If there's downed wires in your neighborhood, the best place to be is inside your house."