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Getting Your Power Restored After Stormy Weather

Arranging for Storm-Related Electrical Repairs

If you have serious damage to your home's electrical system, the utility may not be able to reconnect your power until you make repairs. Even if you do have power or never lost it, you may still have experienced damage that needs to be repaired. In some cases, temporary repairs may be allowed to enable immediate power restoration; however, these repairs will need to be made permanent in a timely manner.

Electrical equipment may belong to you and not the electrical utility. Typically, a homeowner’s ownership of electrical equipment begins where the wires attach to the house. This means the wire from the pole to the house is generally the utility’s, but the wires inside the mast/pipe, the mast, and those attached to and in the house belong to you. If this equipment is damaged, you need to arrange repairs before the utility can safely reconnect power. You should start this process immediately.

What you should do:

storm damaged equipment
(Click to enlarge.)

 

Infographic: How Power is Restored

how power is restored 
(Click on image to enlarge)

Infographic: How Power is Restored (Printable Version)


The 4 Steps to Get Repairs Done:

  1. Do not attempt to repair this equipment yourself. Stay back to avoid the risk of shock, electrocution or fire.
  2. Contact a Licensed Electrical Contractor to make repairs.
  3. Once you have hired a Licensed Electrical Contractor: 
    • The contractor will file for a permit with the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) so there is a record of the work;
    • When the contractor completes the work, the contractor will notify ESA and the ESA Inspector will confirm work has been done safely and power can be reconnected;
    • ESA will inform the utility that it is safe to reconnect;
    • The utility will reconnect when it is able to do so.
  4. After the work has been completed, the homeowner should ask the contractor for a copy of the ESA Certificate of Inspection for their records and for insurance purposes. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, most home insurance policies would cover the cost to repair a home's electrical mast. A Licensed Electrical Contractor must do the repairs, the homeowner’s insurance policy deductible would apply and the insurer should be notified with receipts retained for the claim.

 

Temporary Repairs

If you have had temporary repairs authorized by ESA in order to allow power to be restored, these repairs must be made permanent for safety reasons. If this applies to you, you should have received a letter from your utility or ESA informing you that you have 30 days to make any temporary repairs permanent. Please follow the four steps outlined above to have your repairs completed.  

 

Examples of Damaged Homeowner-Owned Equipment

Click on the pictures to enlarge.

downed pipe     downed mast     downed mast 2