CAMERON COUNTY, Texas (KVEO) — Extreme weather means an increased risk for power outages. While that’s out of anyone’s control, you can do your best to prepare for the worst-case scenario.
Eladio Jaimez, AEP Texas spokesperson, says it’s important to begin gathering an emergency kit with flashlights, batteries and anything that will help you get through a few hours without power should that be the case.
It’s especially important to make a plan if someone in your household relies on power-operated medical equipment.
The AEP does have 200 employees on standby to resolve an outage as quickly as possible.
“We don’t know what to expect with the storms, so it can be something where we have ice on the road, ice on the lines,” he said. “Once it is safe to start working on the equipment, the lineman will get out there and start working to restore power to our customers.”
Jaimez adds if you spot power lines on the ground, you should assume they are energized and call AEP to report it.
For those who are medically vulnerable, an official with Cameron County Emergency Management says they are in the process of developing a plan to provide a place they can go for warmth and power.
Saving money on your electric bill
Blankets and warm socks may not be enough to combat the freezing temperatures we’re expecting, so now is the time to make use of your heater.
If you’re worried about the increased energy usage leading to a hefty bill, there are some things you can do to maximize heat while lowering total cost.
You can do your body and wallet a favor by going up to your attic to check if the insulation is up to par, ensuring it’s indeed helping store heat inside your home.
Additionally, you can look for potential areas around your home where hot air is escaping.
“Something as simple as checking the weather stripping around windows, around doors, looking for leaks and making sure you cover them up with some kind of caulking or anything else, that will allow the heat to stay indoors and will keep you from running the heater too much,” said Jaimez. “It stores the heat inside the house a little bit longer.”