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News Release

Neighboring States lend a hand

TAMPA, August 14, 2004

Hundreds of skilled linemen and tree-trimming crews from neighboring states are in the Tampa Bay area to assist Tampa Electric in the restoration of electric service after Hurricane Charley.

The company has dispatched hundreds of crews to the impacted areas. Tampa Electric service crews are working around the clock to restore power to all customers as soon as possible.

The company has implemented its comprehensive response plan to restore service as quickly and safely as possible. In addition to the numerous precautions area residents can take to protect their families and property, here are a few key tips:

  • Stay away from downed power lines. While some downed lines may spark and snap, others may not appear dangerous at all. Assume all downed lines are potentially hazardous. Avoid any objects in contact with a downed wire. A fence, tree limbs, railroad track or even flood water in contact with an energized wire can conduct dangerous electricity a long distance.
  • If either a portable or permanently installed emergency generator is connected to your home’s electrical system, use a throw-over switch (consult with a licensed electrical contractor). This is important because if it is not done, the generator will backfeed electricity to power lines that may be down in a neighbor's yard or a line that is being repaired by one of our utility crews. This can cause a fatal electrical shock to someone in the neighborhood, or to a utility worker.
  • Tampa Electric’s call centers are currently open. Customer Service Professionals are on duty to handle any storm-related customer service needs. Also, there is no need to call more than once to report an outage, or power line down.
  • If the power goes out, a cordless telephone will not work. Get a touch-tone telephone that plugs directly into the wall.
  • Tampa Electric has booked more than 600 hotel reservations in the Tampa area to accommodate the line crews from out of state who are here to assist in service restoration.
  • Keep your freezer closed. Consume perishable and canned foods first.
  • Thank you for your patience. Tampa Electric crews are committed to doing everything possible to restore service as quickly and safely as possible.

Contact telephone numbers:
Tampa Electric Company – (813) 223-0800 (Hillsborough County), (863) 299-0800 (Polk County) or toll-free 1-800-223-0800.

Media Contact
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TECO Energy, Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas
TECO Energy, Inc.
702 N. Franklin Street
Tampa, Florida 33602
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