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Appalachian Power asking customers to reduce electric usage as much as possible

By Missy Nester, The Welch News

CHARLESTON, W. Va. — Appalachian Power crews are working to restore power to 36,800 customers who remain without electric service following Thursday’s storm.

Extremely cold temperatures across the region have created extraordinary demands on the power system. We are asking businesses and the public that have electric service to help by immediately reducing electricity use as much as possible without sacrificing safety.

Appalachian Power is making this emergency request in coordination with PJM – the regional power grid operator.

Please reduce your electricity use by:

Setting your thermostat lower than usual, if health allows

Postponing the use of major electric appliances such as stoves, dishwashers and clothes dryers

Turning off non-essential electric lights, equipment and appliances

PJM and Appalachian Power ask that customers take these actions until 10 a.m. Dec. 25, 2022, to help ensure adequate power supplies. Customers’ combined actions can reduce overall electricity demand and ease the emergency situation.

Customers should use electricity needed for personal safety and protect against property damage. Minor adjustments to thermostats and other measures can make a significant difference.

“We are actively working with PJM and other regional utilities to minimize the impact of this event on our customers,” said Aaron Walker, Appalachian Power president and chief operating officer. “We understand that cutting back on electricity use can be inconvenient and uncomfortable, especially during the holidays. This is a necessary step to prevent broader power interruptions, and we appreciate our customers’ efforts.”

Possible Next Steps

If further emergency action is required to reduce the load on the electric system, PJM would direct the company to begin grid protection power outages to parts of its service territory. These outages will be brief and intermittent whenever possible to limit the impact on customers.The action will only be taken if necessary to avoid widespread power loss and to prevent long-term damage to the regional electric system.

Customers should be prepared for the possibility of temporary electric service outages if further emergency action is required. Please check with elderly or disabled family, friends and neighbors to ensure they are okay and have a plan for possible outages.

For updates, visit AppalachianPower.com, Facebook.com/AppalachianPower and Twitter.com/AppalachianPowe.

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