Energy Matters – October 2017
Included with this month’s Energy Matters:
Power Smart tip
LEDs use up to 80 per cent less energy and come in a variety of styles and colours to suit your home.
Restoring power – what we do
When your power goes out, we work as efficiently and safely as possible to restore it.
We often get asked what our crews look for when they respond to an outage:
- Public safety is our priority. We must locate downed power lines first to protect people from any harm and reduce the chance of a fire.
- Our crews often work in hazardous conditions. We place the highest priority on their safety when we respond to outages.
- We also give high priority to restoring service to essential facilities like hospitals, emergency services, communication facilities, and water and sewage pumping stations.
- Our next priority is to restore service to small groups of customers and single residences.
- If possible, we will restore electrical service to customers by re-routing power around the outage area. This re-routing allows us to restore power to the greatest number of people as early as possible. We concentrate on neighbourhoods, businesses, and industrial and agricultural facilities.
- Most outages happen during major storms. Fallen trees, flooding, and snow can block our crews. Some customers may have to wait for power to be restored as we work to get access.
Steps in restoring power
- You report the outage.
- We assess the extent of the outage.
- We dispatch crews.
- We restore power.
Q: Why do I have to report my outage?
A: The more outage reports we receive, the faster we can pinpoint the cause of an outage. Our outage management system helps us analyze where the outage is located based on the customer reports in a given area. Our crews can respond more efficiently and quickly if they have this information. Report an outage on our website.
Q: A Manitoba Hydro truck drove past my house without stopping. Why?
A: There could be several reasons. A crew could be driving through your neighbourhood looking for any damage, such as a downed tree on a power line. This often happens after a storm and we have extra staff on duty.
Q: When will my power be restored?
A: We do our best to tell our customers when power will be restored, but each outage is different. Our crews must locate and assess the cause of the outage and communicate with other crews and our dispatch centre, often during challenging conditions such as darkness, wind, rain and blowing snow. We may not provide an estimated time of restoration until we can safely and accurately assess damage. When we do provide an estimated time of restoration, it can change when the full extent of damage becomes clearer, such as when we have to replace a wood pole.
Q: Why are my neighbour’s lights on, but mine still off?
A: They may get electricity from a different power line or be on a different circuit. Sometimes, not all circuits are restored at the same time. During a large outage, parts of the grid are restored one-by-one rather than all at once. This process helps avoid a second outage resulting from overload.
Q: Will Manitoba Hydro give me a refund for the time I am without power?
A: Electricity is metered so you only pay for the power you use.
Install a CO detector – $5 instant rebate available
Manitoba Hydro wants to keep you safe.
Eligible carbon monoxide detectors are included in this fall’s instant rebate campaign by Manitoba Hydro Power Smart.
The province-wide campaign runs to the end of October with 20 retailers participating. Eligible CO detectors must be a plug-in type with battery backup.
Carbon monoxide is “the silent killer” – a colourless, odourless, and tasteless gas you can’t detect on your own. If you have a carbon monoxide detector, a beep can mean the difference between life and death.
While a carbon monoxide detector can warn you of the presence of CO gas, it does not prevent buildup of the gas. Dangerous levels of carbon monoxide can result from a faulty appliance, a clogged chimney, inadequate venting or a buildup of engine exhaust in a garage.
Follow these safety precautions to reduce the risk of CO buildup in your house:
- Have your heating system checked and cleaned each year.
- Install a fresh air intake duct into wood-burning fireplaces or stoves. If that’s not possible, leave windows open while burning wood.
- Clear blockages from external vents and chimneys.
- Never use gasoline-powered equipment in an attached garage (or in the house).
- Never use a barbecue or propane lantern in your home or garage.
Clubhouse is a mental health rehabilitation agency assisting adults in their recovery by providing a wide range of pre-vocational, learning, recreational and social opportunities in a safe, welcoming and restorative environment. Members can attend daily, work side-by-side with new friends and lead a productive and satisfying life. See the Clubhouse Winnipeg website for more information.