ComEd Says it Will Be Days Before Power is Restored in Hardest Hit Areas
Elmhurst is included in towns ComEd is calling "hardest hit." Comcast customers also experiencing cable and Internet outages.
As of 1 a.m. Monday, many areas in Elmhurst were still without power. Most of the downtown area, including City Hall, was pitch black, and streetlights at some of the city's major intersections, like York Road and North Avenue, still were out.
Comcast customers also are experiencing outages of Internet and cable television service. A Comcast recorded message said the utility esimates repairs to their system will be completed by 1 p.m. Monday.
ComEd released a statement at about 10 p.m. Sunday assuring customers that hundreds of crews are out and working around the clock to restore power.
"As of 8 p.m., power has been restored to over 96,000 customers," the statement said.
The utility is reporting that the hardest hit areas include Lombard, Elmhurst, Wheaton, Carol Stream, Addison, West Chicago, Villa Park and Glen Ellyn.
ComEd deployed its new Mobile Operations Center, which holds 25 ComEd engineers, dispatchers and other storm response team members, to the hard-hit areas. The unit is equipped with communications, satellite and video conferencing technology to "optimize restoration efforts," according to the statement.
ComEd also has been deployed to the Joint Operations Center established by DuPage County, which enables ComEd to "expedite restoration" of electricity.
ComEd said it will take several days to restore the system, which was damaged mainly by lightning and high winds.
"ComEd’s restoration process begins immediately with damage assessment," the statement reads. "This process enables the company to determine hardest hit areas and factors it into restoration times. The company then prioritizes outage restoration to ensure public safety first, such as police and fire, then hospitals and other critical customers, such as pumping stations. Next, ComEd restores feeders, which allows us to return power to the largest numbers of customers at one time, followed by smaller service restorations and individual outages."
ComEd has requested assistance from crews from Michigan, Iowa, Indiana, Wisconsin and Missouri to supplement its efforts.
To report an outage, customers can text OUT to 26633, call (800) 334-7661 or visit ComEd.com.
ComEd also offers the following suggestions for customers experiencing a prolonged outage:
• Turn off all appliances including your air conditioner, water heater and water pump.
• Leave a lamp on so you can know when power has been restored.
• Keep freezer and refrigerator doors closed. Food will stay frozen for 36 to 48 hours in a fully loaded freezer, if the door remains closed. A half-full freezer will generally keep food frozen for 24 hours.
• Customers who are on medical support equipment are strongly encouraged to evacuate to a place where they can be comfortable and safe.