Company offers safety tips ahead of potential severe storms
In advance of potential severe weather, Ameren Missouri is reminding customers that now is a good time to make or review your family’s storm safety plan.
“Prepare your storm kit before you need it,” said Patrick Smith, vice president of division operations for Ameren Missouri. “Having a plan in place to prepare for potential severe weather will help you make smart decisions if an emergency happens, potentially saving your life and the lives of others.”
Ameren Missouri encourages customers to take the following steps before severe weather approaches:
- Update their online account and enroll in alerts to be notified of power outages or when crews are working nearby. Alerts also offer the estimated safe restoration time. If customers don’t have an online account, go to AmerenMissouri.com/options to create one. It’s fast, simple and free.
- Create a plan for seeking shelter in the event of severe weather, and discuss the plan with all members of the household.
- Prepare a storm kit with emergency telephone numbers, flashlights and a radio with fresh batteries, along with bottled water and nonperishable foods that don’t require heating. Also include medication and special items for infants, the elderly or family members with special needs.
In the event of severe weather, keep these safety guidelines in mind:
- Stay away from downed power lines and assume they are energized. Also stay clear of brush and trees that may hide downed lines. Report downed lines and outages by calling Ameren Missouri at 800.552.7583 or dialing 911.
- Keep phones and electronics charged when storms are in the forecast.
- Visit AmerenMissouri.com/outage to view the outage map, sign up for outage alerts and track estimated restoration times. The outage map can also be viewed by downloading the free Ameren app.
Smith said Ameren Missouri has been making investments to bolster the grid to better withstand storms and severe weather throughout the year. These investments include new power lines and more weather-resilient poles.
“Ameren Missouri’s Smart Energy Plan is helping customers across Missouri to experience fewer outages and faster responses when they happen,” Smith said. “We are upgrading our system to be more reliable, including stronger utility poles to better withstand strong storms. We are also installing smart technology to reroute power, taking outages from hours to minutes and even seconds.”
Safety is the first and foremost concern during any weather event, and that includes being mindful of public health guidelines that coincide with a severe storm. Ameren Missouri crews continue to wear face masks and practice social distancing to protect the community, and customers are asked to do the same if they engage with an Ameren Missouri crew member in the field.
“As our community continues to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, we feel a special weight of responsibility to keep essential businesses and services running,” Smith said. “Thanks to our Smart Energy Plan upgrades, we are doing everything in our power to ensure minimal energy disruption during severe storm season. When everyone in the community has a severe weather plan in place, it makes it that much easier for our team to focus on the task at hand.”
Ameren Missouri has been providing electric and gas service for more than 100 years, and the company’s electric rates are among the lowest in the nation. Ameren Missouri’s mission is to power the quality of life for its 1.2 million electric and 132,000 natural gas customers in central and eastern Missouri. The company’s service area covers 64 counties and more than 500 communities, including the greater St. Louis area. For more information, visit Ameren.com/Missouri or follow us on Twitter at @AmerenMissouri or Facebook.com/AmerenMissouri.