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Idaho Power working to prevent blackouts during heatwave

Posted at 5:10 PM, Jun 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-28 19:47:25-04

TWIN FALLS — With high temperatures predicted for the foreseeable future, more people may be inclined to spend time indoors and cool off in an air-conditioned environment. To try and reduce the chances of a power outage, Idaho Power is sharing ways to decrease energy usage.

“These conditions do cause, what I’ll say is scarcity in the energy markets," said Adam Richins, the Chief Operating Officer for Idaho Power. "As there really is less energy and transmission to go around.”

Idaho Power is reporting that from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm is the time frame for the highest energy consumption and AC usage. To lessen the chances of a possible blackout, they're sharing preventive measures people can take.

“You can turn up your thermostat a few degrees, just to ensure your air conditioning is not working quite so hard," said Richins. "You can close windows and blinds, especially during the late afternoon when the sun is heating up your house or office.”

Idaho Power also recommends leaving lights off when you can and saving other energy-intensive activities, such as laundry, for earlier hours in the day and out of the 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm time frame.

In the event a blackout occurs, Idaho Power is preparing to be as ready as possible.

“We would really make sure to try and communicate with our customers and let them know what’s happening," said Richens. "Typically if you did see rolling blackouts like you’ve seen in California and Texas, it would be for a short amount of time. The power would go out during that time, then we would be bringing it back up as quickly as we could.”

Officials are also asking for people to be prepared in the event of a blackout like having phones charged, and having flashlights and batteries available.

For Twin Falls residents, the city is asking that if an outage happens, do not contact their emergency line and instead contact Idaho Power.

“Please don’t call emergency dispatch, call Idaho Power," said Palmer. "Idaho Power manages all electrical utilities in Twin Falls and in South Central Idaho so, there’s very little the city has on that. However, if there is a life safety event where you feel like your life is in danger. Whether by heat or otherwise, please call our dispatch center.”