The Steps We Take to Restore Power

Power outages occur for various reasons across Central Lincoln’s service area. Storms, high winds, vegetation, vehicles colliding with power equipment and poles, and even wildlife can cause an outage. In most cases, power is restored within an hour or two, but longer outages do occur — especially in more remote and rural locations.

When an outage happens, we prioritize repairs to restore your power as quickly and safely as possible.

The first step we take is to protect public safety. Downed wires and poles are some of the most serious hazards and we address those first. Treat all downed lines with extreme caution and always assume the wires are energized. Never touch downed lines – or anything near them – and stay well away.

The second step is to check transmission lines. Large transmission lines deliver power to the entire Central Lincoln service area from dams controlled by the Bonneville Power Administration, or BPA. If there is an outage on their transmission lines, our crews must wait for BPA to restore power to those lines before we can deliver power to our customers.

The third step is to check our substations. Substations take the high voltage power delivered from transmission lines and reduce it to a lower voltage for Central Lincoln’s distribution lines. When a substation is down, repairs can take time – affecting thousands of customers. Thanks to investments in our system, we have multiple ways to feed our substations and can often reroute power from another feeder to get your power back on sooner while crews continue to make the repairs.

The fourth step is to check distribution lines. These lines deliver power from substations to a city or neighborhood. Distribution lines are what you see on power poles alongside local roads and in neighborhoods. Emergency services, like hospitals and first responders, are the priority and we work to restore power to these customers first. After that, crews work on restoring power to areas with the greatest number of customers.

The fifth step is to check tap lines. Tap lines carry power from distribution lines to a specific group of homes or buildings. Like distribution lines, tap line repairs are prioritized by the number of customers affected.

A serviceman in the bucket of a service truck works to restore power to a service line.
Florence Serviceman Jason works to restore power to a service line.

The sixth and final step is to check service lines and transformers. Transformers can be gray cylinders attached to poles or green boxes on the ground. These devices are critical in supplying power as they reduce the higher voltage on distribution or tap lines to the correct service voltage for your home or business. Damage to the service line, between your home or business and the transformer on a nearby pole, can result in a situation where you have no power, but your neighbor does.

Call Us to Report Your Outage

We are committed to providing safe, reliable and consistent power to our customers. When major outages – and even minor ones – occur, you can trust our crews are working together to get your power back on as quickly and safely as possible.

To report a power outage, call us at (877)265-3211. To make this a frustration-free process for you, please make sure we have a current phone number on your account. If we don’t have a correct number, our system will not be able to match your phone number to your service location. To update your account information, call us at (877) 265-3211.

For outage information, see our outage map. For outage updates, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. To learn more about how we restore power, watch our Steps to Restoring Power video.

Be Prepared

Please don’t wait until you are in the dark to prepare for an outage. Plan ahead and have a basic supply kit ready for outages and other emergencies. Learn how to assemble your kit at