Prepare For Outages

McMinnville Water and Light is committed to providing safe and reliable energy, but unfortunately, power outages do occur. Don’t let a disruption become a disaster! Please take a moment to read this important energy safety information.

Before An Outage:

  • Keep emergency supplies on hand, including:
    1. Fresh batteries and flashlights
    2. A portable, battery-powered radio and/or television
    3. A wind-up or battery-powered clock
    4. Nonperishable food and water
    5. Cash, since ATMs may not work when the power is out
  • Have either a cell phone or hardwire single-line telephone. Cordless phones may not work without electricity.
  • Know how to manually open and close any electric security or garage doors and gates.
  • Protect electric equipment, such as computers, fax machines,
    televisions, VCRs and microwaves, by installing surge suppressors or
    other power protection devices.
  • Have a battery back-up system if your smoke alarms are wired to your home’s electrical system.
  • Have an emergency plan in place if a member of your household
    depends on life-support or needs other medical equipment. This may
    include a back-up power source or transportation to another facility.
  • Identify the operating requirements of any gas equipment. Appliances with electronic ignitions will not work because electricity is needed to ignite the natural gas. In addition, appliances requiring fans or other electric devices to run (such as central heating units and gas clothes dryers) also won’t operate.

If You Know An Outage May Occur:

  • Shut-off your electronic equipment such as computers, televisions, DVD/VCRs, microwaves and fax machines.
  • Leave one light on so you know when power is restored.
  • Turn off any heat-producing electric equipment such as toaster ovens, electric stove tops, irons or hair curlers.
  • Stay out of elevators – use the stairs instead.

During An Outage:

  • Don’t call 911 to ask about the power outage. Call MWL at 503-472-6158 to report any problems.
  • Use extreme caution, especially on roads without working traffic signals.
  • Use flashlights instead of candles to minimize fire hazards.
  • Keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible to prevent food spoilage.
  • Shut-off any electronic equipment that was operating when the power went off.
  • Shut-off major electric appliances as well. This will help to stabilize the electric system when power is restored.

After an Outage

  • Wait a few minutes before turning on major electric appliances. This will help eliminate problems that could occur if there’s a
    surge in demand immediately after power is restored.
  • If you think that electric power has been restored to your area but your home is still without power, call MWL at 503-472-6158

Portable and Standby Generators:

Never plug a generator into any electric outlets. Generators can feed electricity back into the power lines, putting you and MWL repair crews in danger. It can also damage your appliances or those of your neighbors.

Click here additional information on operating a generator.