LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. – Several utility companies joined forces in Limestone County to restore power to residents. Now, it’s time for homeowners to do a maintenance check.
Athens Utilities has about 50,000 customers and 2,400 miles of power lines throughout Limestone County.
Athens Mayor Ronnie Marks says around 6,000 Athens Utilities customers were out of power at some point during the wintry weather this week.
“So of those 50,000 customers, initially we had 6,000 people out of power,” said Mayor Marks. “And that’s interesting because if you look at that, that’s about 10-12% of the population and you think ‘Well that’s not many,’ but it’s a lot if you’re part of that 6,000.”
Though many were without power, it was restored quickly, because of the help Athens Utilities received from Scottsboro and Huntsville Utilities.
“The good thing is we have a reciprocal agreement with all the other electric departments where we help each other,” said Mayor Marks.
Joe Gehrdes, Huntsville Utilities Community Relations Director says luckily, there shouldn’t be any issues resulting from the outages themselves but the freezing temperatures are another story.
“It’s a good time when the weather warms back up to have your heating and cooling equipment serviced,” said Gehrdes. “Have a technician come out and evaluate it and make sure it’s operating at its highest level of efficiency.”
Gehrdes says if the units are not working efficiently, it can become expensive.
He adds that there are other places around the house you need to check. “When it gets really cold, seals can pop, window seals, any caulk seals. Check your weather stripping. Check your windows and doors. Check your insulation. And then have your HVAC unit checked if necessary.”
Mayor Marks says you may not have been impacted by the outages this time around, but it could happen next time.
“If you’re living in North Alabama, we know that you may not get hit this year, you may not get hit next year, but you can depend on the weather changing and these kinds of situations occurring,” he said.
Whether you were dealing with a power outage or not, most are dealing with the cold, so general maintenance is necessary.