When the weather outside is frightful…be prepared for winter outages. Winter weather can bring possible snow and hazardous conditions that cause power outages. At Jones-Onslow, protecting our customers and employees is a top priority.

When power goes out, JOEMC recommends the following steps to protect your property and family:

  • If you use a portable generator, use a transfer switch to isolate it from our power lines. Generators that are not isolated can feed back into the utility company’s electrical system and possibly electrocute anyone coming into contact with those wires.
  • Be extra careful when using kerosene heaters and fireplaces. Never use outdoor grills or gas-powered generators inside or in attached garages. This could lead to carbon monoxide poisoning which can be deadly. In winter, try to keep exterior doors openings to a minimum.
  • Limit refrigerator and freezer door openings to prevent food spoilage.
  • Turn off large appliances that come on automatically as well as appliances you were using when the outage occurred. Disconnect sensitive electronics to avoid damage from surges or lightning strikes.
  • When power comes back on, give the electrical system a chance to stabilize – turn appliances back on gradually.
  • Winter storms can bring down trees and power lines. Please remember to stay away from any downed utility lines and call JOEMC at (910) 353-1940 or (800) 682-1515 to report them immediately. Do not touch any object that is in contact with downed power lines – especially objects that can transmit electricity such as water and metal. Never drive your car over power lines. If a power line falls over your car while you are driving, stay inside your car until you receive appropriate help.

In the event of a major outage, rest assured that our crews will be working around the clock to restore power. Keep the following in mind if you see our crews working:

  • Because of the location of many power lines, utility employees frequently work along roadsides. The North Carolina “Move Over” Law requires motorists approaching or passing any public service or utility vehicle (that is operating a warning signal) to reduce speed and move their vehicles into a nearby lane if possible. In extreme weather, it’s better to stay at home and keep off the road unless it’s an absolute emergency.
  • If you see crews working in your area, please don’t go near them. They are working in dangerous surroundings. Your distraction can present a hazard and slow their progress.

To keep up with the outages that occur on the JOEMC system, go to www.joemc.com and look for the outage map icon in the “Your Energy Account” Section (located in the upper right of the homepage). The map has around-the-clock access and is updated in real time showing current outages and the number of customers affected.