Before

  • Monitor the weather forecast for your area.
  • If severe weather calls for a tornado, pick a safe place where family members can gather. It could be your basement, or a center hallway, bathroom, or closet on the lowest floor.
  • Check to see if shrubs or trees need trimming or if you have any weak limbs. Be particularly careful when working near power lines.
  • Compile a storm preparedness kit, including essential medicines, non-perishable food items and water, flashlights, portable radios, extra batteries and a manual can opener.
  • Make a list of emergency phone numbers. Include our 24-hour customer service line 1-800-4NIPSCO.
  • If someone in your family requires life support equipment, make prior arrangements for a back-up power supply. This may mean having a generator or going to a healthcare facility that has back-up power.
  • If you have a permanent auxiliary generator installed that can be automatically started in the event of an outage, contact a licensed electrician to ensure that it meets current electric codes and have a transfer switch to prevent dangerous back-feed.
  • Fill your gas tank, as gas pumps do not work if the power is out.
  • Have cash on hand. ATM’s will also be off if the power goes out.
  • If you have an automatic garage door opener, know how to open and close the door in the event of an outage.

During

  • Follow local news or the National Weather Service for up-to-date storm information, including knowing what a tornado WATCH and WARNING means.
  • Do not touch downed or hanging power lines or anything touching them.
  • Keep away from windows.
  • Keep candles away from furniture, draperies and other flammable materials. Also, keep children and pets away from open flames.
  • Do not use a stove or grill to heat your home.
  • If using a generator, locate the unit away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors. More generator tips.
  • Disconnect or turn off appliances that were on when the power outage occurred. Leave a light on so you will know when power is restored.
  • If you leave your home while the power is out, check that all heat-producing appliances, such as stoves, irons and curling irons are unplugged before you leave.
  • Avoid opening the refrigerator or freezer. Food will stay frozen in a fully loaded freezer for 36 to 48 hours if the doors remain closed. If the freezer is half full, the food will generally keep 24 hours.
  • If there is severe damage and it appears that the outage will last an extended period of time, consider moving to an alternate location.

After

  • Do not touch downed or hanging power lines or anything touching them.
  • Throw away any food that has an unusual odor, color or texture.
If your community experiences a disaster, register on the American Red Cross Safe and Well website available through RedCross.org to let your family and friends know about your welfare. If you don’t have Internet access, call 1-800-GET-INFO to register yourself and your family.

Have an emergency?

Natural Gas: If you smell gas, think you have a gas leak, have carbon monoxide symptoms or have some other gas emergency situation, go outside and call 911 and then our emergency number 1-800-634-3524.
Electric: For any electric emergency, including a downed power line, power outage or other electric-related situation, please call 1-800-464-7726.