Nearly 1,700 crews work around the clock to restore power quickly and safely throughout northern Illinois
Video footage of crews restoring outages: https://vimeo.com/801412568/35e12af7cd
Despite the challenge of working in icy conditions, ComEd crews have restored power to nearly 134,000 customers throughout the communities it serves after severe ice storms moved through northern Illinois Wednesday and Thursday.
The storms damaged trees and equipment, causing power outages for approximately 216,000 customers. Nearly 1,700 ComEd and contractor crews will be working around the clock to restore power to customers. ComEd expects that power will be restored to 80 percent of customers by 11 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 23. To support this restoration goal, ComEd has called upon utilities from across the region, and 900 additional crew members will arrive in Illinois today to support safe and swift recovery efforts.
“At ComEd, our hard-working field forces train for challenging conditions, and that training has certainly been put to the test today as they work around the clock to safely restore power to our customers in these icy and windy conditions,” said Terence R. Donnelly, president and COO of ComEd. “We recognize that any outage is frustrating to our customers, especially during freezing conditions, and we thank them for their patience as we work to restore the remaining outages as quickly as we can.”
The combination of widespread ice and high winds has led to a multi-day recovery effort to restore all the customers affected by this storm. Layers of ice on trees, roads and equipment create additional hazards for utility crews leading to additional outages and longer restoration times well after the storm has passed. While many impacted customers have been restored, some customer outages in pockets with the most significant damage may last until late Saturday night, Feb. 25, or early Sunday morning, Feb. 26. As of 9 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 23, nearly 82,000 customers remain without service.
ComEd has been investing in power grid upgrades and tree trimming to minimize the impact of storms. Since smart grid upgrades began in 2011, ComEd has avoided more than 19 million power outages – saving more than $3.3 billion in outage-related costs – and improved overall reliability by more than 80 percent. In 2022, ComEd delivered its best reliability ever and was recognized with the ReliabilityOne Award for having the most resilient power grid in the U.S.
ComEd prioritizes attention on repairs that will bring back the greatest number of customers, and focuses on critical services, such as law enforcement, fire departments, hospitals and senior centers. Crews then move to restoration of individual outages.
The following tips and information encourage customers to stay safe following severe weather:
- If you encounter a downed power line, immediately call ComEd at 1-800-EDISON-1 (1-800-334-7661).
- Spanish-speaking customers should call 1-800-95-LUCES (1-800-955-8237).
- Never approach a downed power line. Always assume a power line is energized and extremely dangerous.
- Check on elderly and other family members and neighbors to ensure their safety and make alternate arrangements in the event of an outage.
Customers can sign up for Outage Alerts at ComEd.com/Alerts or text OUT to 26633 to report their outage and receive restoration information about when their power may be restored.
ComEd also offers a mobile app for iPhone® and Android™® smart phones that gives customers the ability to report power outages and manage their accounts. In addition, customers can report outages through ComEd’s Facebook and Twitter pages.
ComEd is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NASDAQ: EXC), a Fortune 200 energy company with approximately 10 million electricity and natural gas customers – the largest number of customers in the U.S. ComEd powers the lives of more than 4 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state’s population. For more information visit ComEd.com and connect with the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
ComEd Media Relations