Disruptions in utility services can happen for various reasons, such as emergencies, severe weather, downed trees or power lines. They can impact any community, so it's important to know what to do in the event of a utility interruption.
- Avoid using candles. If you do use candles, never leave them unattended.
- Take cover, if necessary.
- If outside, be aware of trees and downed wires.
- Do not touch, go near, or try to move downed wires.
- Consider all downed lines as energized and extremely dangerous.
- Report any downed lines to PECO immediately at 1-800-841-4141.
- If you are in a vehicle and power lines fall on it, stay inside the car until emergency personnel can assist you.
If You Lose Phone Service:
- Use your cell phone, or borrow one from a friend or neighbor, and call your service provider to report the outage.
- You could lose phone service during a power outage if your phone requires an electrical outlet to work. It is a good idea to have a phone that does not rely on electricity, and simply plugs into a phone jack.
If You Smell Gas:
- Do Not smoke or light lighters or matches. If the odor is very strong, do not use your phone or operate any light switches or electrical devices - any spark could cause a fire.
- Open windows.
- Evacuate immediately, then call 9-1-1.
If There is a Power Outage:
- Call your service provide immediately to report the outage.
- PECO Energy Customer Service: 1-800-494-4000.
- PECO Energy Emergency Hotline: 1-800-841-4141.
- Disconnect or turn off all appliances that would otherwise go on automatically when the power comes back on. (If several appliances start up at once, they could overload the circuits.)
- To prevent food spoilage, keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. Each time the door is opened, heat enters and speeds up the thawing process.
- Stay indoors, if possible.
- Do Not burn charcoal indoors, and do not use your kitchen gas range, stove or oven to heat rooms. These might cause a fire or a hazardous smoke condition.
- Keep a battery-operated radio tuned to news radio for updates.
Water and Sewer-Related Problems:
- Always have a supply of bottled water in the house and in your Shelter-in-Place Kit.
- If you see water coming up from the ground or road, or suspect a water main break, call the Philadelphia Water Department at 215-685-6300. Be ready to provide the following information on the phone:
- A description of the condition
- What is being affected (street, basement, subway)
- The exact location of the problem
- You name, address and phone number.
- If you have no water or very low water pressure, call the Philadelphia Water Department at 215-685-6300.
- If there is a concern about drinking water quality, officials will tell you what actions to take.
For more information, visit our Utility Interruption page where you can download our Disruption in Utility Service flyer or our What to Do When the Lights Go Out flyer.