The City of Swift Current operates its own electrical utility, Swift Current Light and Power, providing electrical power to the citizens within its franchise area. Swift Current Light and Power maintains our electrical grid in a professional manner and updates the infrastructure as necessary to ensure the safe and steady supply of power to our citizens. The power we supply is purchased in bulk from SaskPower with two main transmission lines and has the ability to cross feed should one source be compromised. Plans are in place to restore power in less than 8 hours for most events.
- The risk of an extended power outage in the City is low, however, these events do occur at times, usually caused by major weather events that are wide spread such as the wind storm that affected Prince Albert a few years ago. Should the power go out, start by contacting Light and Power at 306-778-2770 to report the outage. If the outage lasts beyond 8 hours, you may want take steps to heat your home. Here are a few tips to ensure you do it safely.
How to prepare for a power outage
- Keep a 72-hour emergency preparedness kit in an easy-to-reach location. This kit contains commonly needed supplies for a family for up to three days.
- Protect all electronic devices with a surge protector.
- Purchase back-up batteries for essential electronics.
Staying safe during a power outage
- If you use a portable generator, make sure it is running outside only. If it runs inside, it will give off carbon monoxide gas which is deadly. Put it outside and run extension cords into the home.
- If you use a wood burning stove or fireplace, be sure it is properly vented and that you dispose of the ashes in a metal container away from the house.
- DO NOT use camp stoves, kerosene heaters or barbeques indoors, as they emit carbon monoxide. Gas stoves used as a heat source for long periods of time without ventilation will do the same.
- Close any ventilation inlets or outlets that could allow cold air into the house.
- Be cautious using candles for light, they must be continuously monitored as they can start a fire very quickly. Use flashlights for portable lighting.
- DO NOT connect a portable generator to your electrical system unless you have a certified transfer switch at the main service connection. A generator connected to the electrical system will feed power back out into the grid and could electrocute the linemen working to restore power.
- Limit how often you open and close your refrigerator and freezer doors to help food stay cool. Additionally, use a cooler filled with ice or snow to keep food cold.
- Turn off or disconnect any electrical appliances and equipment to prevent damage from overload when power is restored.
- Have a portable radio to listen for news updates, monitor social media, and sign up for Swift Current Alerts for information about the restoration of power.
What if you see a downed powerline?
Call 911 to report the situation immediately. Do not approach or touch the power line. Always assume that downed lines are energized. Keep yourself, pets, and others at least 10 meters (33 feet) away from the wires or anything that is in contact with the wires.
- If you are in a vehicle with a downed line touching it, do not get out of the car unless the car is on fire. If you must get out, jump as far away from the car as possible landing with your feet together, and then hop or shuffle your feet to avoid shock.
- If an electrical wire has fallen on a car, do not approach the car or attempt to rescue the person in the car.