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Mid-American Energy Company issued a comprehensive statement to city officials on the progress the company has been making to restore power to areas affected by Monday’s storm.

MidAmerican’s storm recovery and restoration efforts continue with substantial progress made Wednesday. In 24 hours, our crews, supported by utilities from across the Midwest and beyond, restored more than 63,000 customers’ power. Put another way, since the peak when we had 280,000 customers out, almost 200,000 customers have had power restored in 65 hours. Here is the latest breakdown by location:

Peak outages

Outages as of 11 AM Thurs

Restorations completed

DM

145,000

39,742

105,258

QC

106,000

30,927

75,073

IC

28,000

8,669

19,331

System-wide

279,000

82,000

199,662

MidAmerican linemen and tree crews, along with more than 1,000 out-of-state utility and contract linemen and tree crews on the ground assisting us, continue to work around the clock, 24/7. The crews are working 16 hour shifts, mostly 7:00 AM to 11:00 PM, with some working 3:00 PM to 7:00 AM staggered shifts to support the all-day coverage.

As you may know, we prioritize restoring service starting with the parts of our system that serve the most customers and this includes the rebuild of the large transmission lines and substations. Additionally, facilities that are critical to communities, such as public safety communications, hospitals, water treatment facilities, etc. are at the top of the list. We then work our way down to medium-sized and smaller circuits along with the individual service lines.

Once the “backbone” of our system, which is the larger transmission and feeder lines, was repaired, we started working in the neighborhoods to focus on restoring local service. This work continues in earnest today and we anticipate restoring most customers by the end of the day. However, some customers may remain out into Friday and part of Saturday due to the sheer volume of incidents and extensive damage.

You may get questions from customers about why their neighbors nearby or even across the street are on but they don’t have power yet. There could be a number of reasons, including that they may be on separate circuits, there may be line damage on their property or somewhere nearby, or perhaps a line feeding into the neighborhood is damaged. As you are aware, our utility infrastructure is complicated and often times there are many sources into a neighborhood and community that allow for us to manage the safety and reliability of the system.

As you know, safety is our top priority for all of our customers and employees. If you see trucks in your neighborhoods, either driving by or idled, they are an integral part of our restoration process. These individuals are assisting with assessing and reporting damage, looking for situations where a simple repair will restore service, and in some cases physically watching downed wires that may be energized to ensure people in the area stay away and stay safe.

Please help us to share information regarding who is responsible for certain equipment and connections on their property. If the customer-owned “weatherhead” or “weathercap”, the service head or service entrance cap, is pulled away from the house or if there is damage to the meter box, an electrician may need to make repairs prior to our crews being able to restore power. We have posted a graphic on our website to help our customers understand their electric service connection.

We continue to encourage customers who are experiencing an outage to report them to us as quickly as possible so we can pinpoint areas of greatest need. Outages can be reported on our website, via private message on Facebook or Twitter, or by phone at 888-427-5632. For gas leak emergencies, call 800-595-5325.

Finally, but most importantly…THANK YOU!!! We so appreciate the countless ways you have stepped up to help…including your support, assistance, coordination, communicating information, and so much more.  We know we are in this together…as there are so many working to support the recovery efforts across all parts of the communities that were hit by this historic storm. This recovery is a monumental task…and in partnership we are strong and resilient.

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