What To Do In a Outage

It seems kind of silly to write a web page about what to do when the power goes out (since you probably won't be able to use your computer if you don't have electricity) but we're all about being prepared. Go ahead and program our outage numbers into your cell phone now, just in case you need them in the future. And read over the tips below. Taking a few precautions during and after severe weather will help keep everyone safe and minimize damage.

What to do:

  • Avoid all downed utility lines. It's difficult to distinguish between power, cable and phone lines. Assume that any line you see on the ground is energized and remain a safe distance away.
  • It's tempting to start cleaning up the yard right after a storm, but be careful. Don't remove debris that's within 10 feet of a power line-a downed wire might be hidden underneath.
  • To protect kids and pets from fallen power lines and other storm hazards, it's best to keep them inside after the storm.
  • Steer clear of any standing water near wires and appliances.
  • If the power goes out, your electric garage door won't open on its own. If you evacuate your home, be sure to have a door key with you so you can re-enter. And to operate your garage door manually, pull on the emergency release cord and push the door up using the lift handle.
  • When your power is restored, plug in or restart appliances one at a time. If several large appliances start up at once when power is restored, they may overload your home's electric circuits.
  • Be patient. Power may be restored faster in some parts of your neighborhood than others. It's not uncommon for neighbors across the street-or even next door-to receive power before others. It all depends on which equipment was knocked out by the storm.
  • Don't assume the poles and wires company knows about your outage. You should always call in to report your power outage to ensure they have a record of it.

Who to call:

To report outages, downed wires or damage to your electric meter, you'll need to contact your local transmission and distribution utility (that's the company that takes care of the poles and wires in your area). Be sure to program their number into your cell phone before severe weather strikes.

AEP Texas Central


AEP Texas North


Centerpoint Energy


Sharyland Utilities






Not sure which company serves your area? Your bill should tell you. Log into your Online Account Manager and look under the graph in the YOUR USAGE section on the back of your bill.

You should also program the First Choice Power customer care number into your phone. You can reach us toll-free at 1-.