Protect yourself and our crews!
Generators can come in handy if the power goes out during a storm. But it’s important to use them properly to keep yourself, your neighbors, and East Central Energy employees safe.
Backfeed occurs when power is sent back through your home’s electrical lines in reverse, creating a dangerous level of electricity that puts ECE crews at risk of severe injury or death.
Before you purchase a generator, determine your backup power needs to select the right size. View Consumer Reports' recommendations. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when operating to prevent injury, fire, or carbon monoxide poisoning. Improper use or installation of a generator can cause property damage, serious injury, or even death. Shock or electrocution of lineworkers can occur, as well as damage to home appliances and neighboring homes.
Portable generators should never be connected directly to your home’s wiring or plugged into a wall outlet. In addition:
Keep portable generators at least 20 feet away from your home.
Follow safety guidelines when you handle and store generator fuel.
Use a heavy-duty extension cord designed for outdoor use to connect appliances to the generator. Make sure the extension cord is free of cuts or tears and has a wattage rating that exceeds the total wattage of items plugged in.
To reduce the risk of backfeeding, and to protect utility workers who may be operating in the area, install a transfer switch.
Generators produce carbon monoxide (CO), which is an odorless, colorless gas. It can poison people or animals who breathe it in. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include dizziness, headaches, nausea, and fatigue. Never operate a generator inside your home, in other enclosed or partially enclosed spaces, and always operate away from doors, windows, and vents. Direct the exhaust away from your home.