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Spokane, Wash.: SPOKANE, Wash. – Jan. 31, 2008, 3:30 p.m.: Avista crews have been working round-the-clock to restore power to our customers hit by winter storms in the Inland Northwest. Just as crews restore power to one group of customers, the heavy snow and winds knock out power to others.
Currently, there are 667 customers without electric service throughout our service territory. It is important that customers remain alert to the possibility of downed power lines and to report any sightings to Avista at (800) 227-9187.
With more winter weather predicted, please be prepared by:
. making sure you have handy a flashlight and fresh batteries, battery-powered radio, battery or wind-up alarm clock and manual can opener.
. having supplies that can help keep you warm, such as:
hats, gloves or mittens
reserves of back-up energy sources, such as propane, firewood for wood stoves, wood pellets, etc.
. having a back-up plan. If your home or neighborhood experiences an extended outage, consider staying with family or friends who have power.
. assisting family members or neighbors who may be vulnerable if exposed to cold temperatures for extended periods.
Our meter readers are also meeting the challenges of working in the weather conditions enduring cold temperatures, heavy snow, ice and treacherous roads. As a result of these factors and a number of closed roads, some Avista customers will receive estimated bills where meter readers were unable to access the meter for an actual read. An estimated read is based on the customer’s prior use and the current temperatures. Once the meter is actually read, the account balance will reflect the customer’s true energy usage. To minimize the possibility of an estimated bill, please ensure there is access to your meter so meter readers can obtain accurate information.
Customers are also urged to clear snow from natural gas and electric meters. It is important that snow and ice be gently removed from the meter to prevent damage. Please remember not to kick or hit a natural gas meter or its piping to break away built-up snow or ice.
Another consideration for families with students at home due to school closures is that you may find your energy demands increase due to increased heating, lighting and appliance use that are typically not in use when you are away from home during the day. Below are some simple energy efficiency suggestions to help in managing your energy bill.
. Turn down the thermostat before you go to bed or when you are active around the house. Programmable thermostats can be used to adjust temperature settings up to several times per day according to a preset schedule. We recommend setting your thermostat at or below 68 degrees, but particularly for the elderly, comfort is most important.
. Turn off kitchen, bath and other ventilating fans when you are done. In one hour, these fans can pull a houseful of warm air right outside.
. Make sure your fireplace is properly vented. If you do not have a proper amount of outside air for combustion, your fireplace will draw heated air from inside your house. Keep your refrigerator closed while deciding what to eat. Each time you open the fridge door, the compressor has to run for eight to 10 minutes to keep the cold inside.
. Make sure you and all your family members turn off the lights when leaving a room.
For more energy efficiency tips and information, visit www.avistautilities.com.
Avista Corp. is an energy company involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is our operating division that provides service to 348,000 electric and 305,000 natural gas customers in three Western states. Avista’s primary, non-regulated subsidiary is Advantage IQ. Our stock is traded under the ticker symbol “AVA.” For more information about Avista, please visit www.avistacorp.com.
Avista Corp. and the Avista Corp. logo are trademarks of Avista Corporation.
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