The AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) technology employed at Coastal Electric can and usually does
determine if a meter is without power. Even so, it's important to contact Coastal Electric immediately whenever
an outage has occurred.
Here's a few things you should do if your power goes out.
What should I do if my power is off?
First, check your home's breaker panel, fuse box and any outdoor disconnects to make sure the outage is not
due to a tripped breaker or fuse in the panel.
Second, check to see if several of your neighbors' power is off. This will help you determine if the problem
exists inside your home or is a result of a power outage on our lines.
Who do I call to report my outage?
You have several options here. First, you can call our automated TelePay
system at (843) 538-5800, it's quick and easy and updates our outage computer instantly. Or, if you have a
smart phone or tablet, you
can report an outage using the SmartHub App available free from the Google Play store or the
Apple App Store. Lastly, you may call (843) 538-5700 to report your outage.
Do I need to call more than once?
Call any time you have a power outage. We are here to serve you. Once you report the outage, try not to call
us again unless you have an emergency. Be assured that our crews are doing everything possible to restore your
power as soon as possible. Unnecessary calls prevent those who have not reported their outage from getting
through or generate multiple outage tickets for the same location.
Be prepared for an outage
Inclement weather, animals, auto accidents and equipment malfunctions can happen at any time of the day or year, so be prepared for unexpected power outage.
It doesn't take a lot of money or time to prepare for a storm, but it does require some planning beforehand.
Know the location of your emergency supplies; place your insurance policies and important family documents in a safe place. Seal important documents in zip-lock bags.
Check to see if shrubs or trees need trimming or if you have any weak limbs. Be particularly careful when working near power lines. Also, remove items near the home that could possibly become airborne (toys, trash cans, etc.)
Listen to local radio or TV stations for up-to-date storm information.
Fill your gas tank before a storm arrives, gas pumps do not work without electricity. Automatic teller machines will also shut down if the power goes out, so have some cash on hand.
Stock emergency water and drinks. Keep containers handy so that you can fill them with tap water if severe weather approaches.
Stock dry or canned goods in one part of a pantry or in a designated kitchen cabinet.
Restoring power after widespread outages is a big job that involves more than simply throwing a switch or removing a tree from a line. It involves a huge coordination effort with possibly hundreds of linemen, tree trimmers and office personnel working in very dangerous situations. There is nothing routine when restoring power after a storm.
During an outage, Coastal Electric is committed to restoring the electric power to all co-op accounts as safely and quickly as possible. In this effort, our overriding goal is to safely restore power to the greatest number of members in the shortest time possible. In order to accomplish that, the process begins with a damage assessment of the co-op's lines and facilities by employees who have been specifically trained to accomplish those tasks. The assessment allows the co-op to direct its resources (both labor and materials) to the areas where they are needed the most.
Repairs are first made to the co-op's large transmission lines which carry high-voltage electricity to our distribution system from generation stations. Lines such as these must be repaired first along with any damage to transmission substations. Transmission lines serve many thousands of accounts.
Next in the process of restoration of power are the distribution substations and their respective main feeder lines. The co-op has 12 substations on its system and there are over 2,000 miles of distribution and service lines which are routed from the substations. Main feeder lines are those that you normally see alongside a highway.
Individual tap lines are repaired next in the restoration process. Tap lines typically serve the fewest number of members.
Safety is our highest priority during any power restoration situation. Sometimes you will notice your lights going back off shortly after they have come back on. In some cases, it is necessary to remove power from an energized section in order to safely repair any damages or replace transformers or other line equipment. Most times the power will come back on once the repair is made. In other cases your power may go off because it is a legitimate outage. When in doubt, you can always call in to re-report the new outage.