If you are currently without power, please report it via the SmartHub app, or call us at 580-875-3351 or 800-522-3520.
What You Can Do To Prepare
We want to remind you to please be prepared in case temporary power outages do occur. Some things that you can do to prepare for power outages include:
- Keeping phone numbers of emergency response agencies (e.g., 911, hospital, fire department, police) in a convenient location, in the event emergency assistance is needed.
- Having an alternate plan in place to ensure the continuity of any life-support needs. This may include making special arrangements to spend time with a friend or relative during an outage or using a back-up generator.
- If you use a back-up generator, please understand that customers are responsible for the safe installation, use, and maintenance of any back-up power.
- Ensuring that you have a back-up telephone if you use a cordless or other telephone that is dependent on electricity.
- Having a battery-powered radio on hand and a supply of fresh batteries to stay aware of news and other information.
- Keeping an emergency box or bag of supplies, such as medical items, flashlights, and candles, packed at all times. It’s much easier to locate one box or bag of supplies in the dark rather than searching around the house looking for each item.
What if I’m dependent on electricity for a medical device?
If you rely on electric or battery-dependent medical technologies such as breathing machines, a power wheelchair or scooter, and home oxygen or dialysis, it is critical that you have a plan in place for an extended power outage:
- Establish multiple people you can contact for help who know how to operate your equipment and backup systems
- Keep emergency contact information handy
- Consider a safe backup power source, such as a generator or uninterruptible power supply
- Purchase equipment that has battery back-up. Most life support equipment includes battery operated options which are also portable. This will provide time for alternate arrangements to be made. Remember to keep the battery charged and to test the battery every six months.
How long a power outage will be, and its cause, cannot be determined until a district crew physically inspects the affected area. Severe weather, such as lightning, can make it particularly difficult for the crew to reach and repair the distribution poles or wires. Outages can also be caused by animals.
When an outage affects a large number of members, notifications will be made and updated on our Facebook page.
Cotton Electric personnel use software that predicts the number of people without power as outages are reported, either by members or by crews inspecting the damage and determining the cause of the outage.
Although the amount of electricity an account uses is not a factor, CEC may prioritize life-threatening emergencies: live, downed power lines that may be a threat to the community, public service businesses (fire departments, for example), and homes with a resident who has a medical condition that requires uninterrupted electric service.
Western Farmers Electric Cooperative (WFEC) in Anadarko supplies CEC’s power. If WFEC’s power is lost to a substation, CEC helps WFEC restore power to the substation. If the situation allows, we may temporarily reroute power from other substations until power is restored to the original substation.
Disastrous circumstances present every utility service with unparalleled challenges. Extra workforce can be required to repair immense damage. In line with the cooperative spirit, whenever necessary and possible, cooperatives have a working agreement to help each other repair the service area that has been severely traumatized by disaster. In Oklahoma, this results in 27 cooperatives and thousands of co-op employees and contractors available to help one another during a major disaster. And, whenever needed, thousands of cooperatives nationwide can be called upon to help restore power to a severely traumatized area. Co-ops are able to restore power to devastated areas faster by helping each other.
Since there are a limited number of incoming telephone lines at the co-op and a large number of incoming calls, Cotton Electric members may receive a busy signal when they try to call – especially during a major power outage. Cotton Electric employees try to answer each call quickly and efficiently so that other members’ calls can get through. Cotton Electric also uses CRC, a cooperative that helps answer overflow calls during major outages, as well as an automated system to take outage calls.