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IF YOU SUSPECT A GAS LEAK, LEAVE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY AND CALL UNITIL AT THE NUMBER BELOW FROM A SAFE LOCATION.

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GAS EMERGENCIES

CUSTOMER SERVICE

Customers should be prepared for the possibility of extended outages
August 26, 2011
Hampton, N.H.

Customers of Unitil Corporation, (www.unitil.com), a provider of natural gas and electricity to customers in New England, are urged to prepare for the possibility of power outages associated with Hurricane Irene.   Based on today’s forecast, the storm’s impact will be most intense on Sunday with the strongest winds and rain between 10am and sunset. 

Unitil has secured additional resources from as far away as Illinois, Michigan and Tennessee.  At this time we have over 300 resources including line crews, tree crews, damage assessors and wires down personnel supported by hundreds of Unitil employees.  We plan to open our System and Regional Emergency Operations Centers (EOC) in Massachusetts and New Hampshire at 6 am on Sunday, August 28th.

Due to the severity of the forecast we anticipate the impact to the electrical system in the region will be severe and could result in a multiple-day restoration.  We encourage customers to be prepared for several days without power.  Unitil will be communicating throughout the storm and restoration through Public Service Announcements (PSAs), our customer call center and through the media.  We also encourage customers to follow along with our storm updates via our Twitter feed.  If you would like to follow go to http://twitter.com/Unitil or by clicking the Twitter logo in the footer of any page of our website, www.unitil.com.  You do not have to have a personal Twitter account or follow us directly; we include the 5 most recent tweets on our Outage Center for everyone to see.  We are also coordinating safety and preparation with the American Red Cross.  Please see their helpful information including checklists and preparation tips here.

 

Important Safety Reminders

  • Stay clear of fallen or sagging power lines and treat all lines as if they are 'live.'  Stay away from downed trees or poles, and report this situation immediately to Unitil at the Customer Service numbers below.
  • Emergency generators can be a helpful tool by providing electricity during a power outage.  However, improperly installed generators can energize lines outside your home believed to be inactive by technicians, resulting in serious injury or even death.  The back-up generator should be installed to receive power from either your utility or the generator, but never both at the same time. 
  • It is important to ensure that generators are located outside and have appropriate venting because generators exhaust carbon monoxide.  Carbon monoxide is a deadly, silent odorless gas.  Install a carbon monoxide detector in your home and be alert to the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, which are sudden nausea, cherry red lips or headaches.  If you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, leave the area to get fresh air.  For more generator safety tips, visit www.unitil.com.

 

Customers experiencing outages should call the following toll-free numbers:

  • For the NH Seacoast Area: 800-582-7276
  • For the NH Capital Area: 800-852-3339
  • For Massachusetts: 888-301-7700

You can also report outages online.

“Unitil is preparing customers for the possibility of multiple days without power based on the potential magnitude of Hurricane Irene ,” Unitil VP of Communications and Public Affairs Carol Valianti said. “We will be in close contact with emergency responders and public officials to ensure a safe, well coordinated response.”

 

For more information please contact:

Carol Valianti
VP, Communications & Public Affairs, Unitil Corporation
valianti@unitil.com
Phone: (603) 773-6447
Cell: (603) 418-4975
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About Unitil Corporation

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering natural gas and electricity in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 104,300 electric customers and 79,900 natural gas customers. Other subsidiaries include Usource, Unitil’s non-regulated business segment. For more information about our people, technologies, and community involvement please visit www.unitil.com.

 


For more information please contact:
Alec O'Meara

Media Relations Manager
OMeara@unitil.com
Phone: 603-773-6404

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