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Emergency Information

Expand the following sections by clicking the headers.

General Safety:

Power Outages:

  • Turn off the stove and any heat-producing appliances.

  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed.

  • Turn off all electronic appliances except for one light inside and a porch light. (The porch light will let crews know when the power is restored).

  • Have flashlights and battery-powered lighting on hand with fresh batteries. Never use candles.

Generator Safety:

  • Do not attach a generator directly to the electrical system of a house unless the generator has a properly installed transfer switch.

  • Do not use a generator indoors, near a window or door, or in an attached garage, even with the door open.

  • Inspect the portable generator for damaged or loose fuel lines.

  • Only use generators outdoors in well-ventilated areas away from doors, windows, vents and other openings. This will prevent exhaust fumes from entering the home.

  • Install carbon monoxide (CO) detectors (either battery-operated or plug-in with battery backup) inside the home. Test the alarms at least once a month.

  • If the CO alarm sounds, immediately move to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door.

  • Prevent backfeed and electric shock by only using a generator wired by a qualified electrician.

  • Turn off generators and let them cool down before refueling. Never refuel a generator while it is hot.

  • Store fuel for the generator in a container that is intended for the purpose outside of living areas.

Emergency Supply Kit:

Basic items that should be in an emergency kit are:

  • Water: One gallon per person per day for three to seven days

  • Food: Non-perishable and canned food supply for three to seven days

  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio with extra batteries

  • Cell phone with charger

  • First aid kit and first aid book

  • Flashlight and extra batteries

  • Manual can opener for food

  • Anti-bacterial hand wipes or gel

  • Wrench or pliers to turn off water

  • Blanket or sleeping bag – 1 per person

  • Prescription medications, glasses and hearing aids

  • Seasonal change of clothing, including sturdy shoes

  • Toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, feminine supplies

  • Extra house and car keys

  • Important documents – insurance policies, copy of driver’s license, Social Security card, bank account records

  • Fire extinguisher

  • Cash and change

More information on emergency preparedness can be found online at www.ReadyNC.org.

If You Lose Power:

Before an outage occurs, it’s important to make sure the city has your most current telephone number on file so the outage can be accurately recorded. Please call (252) 467-4800 to update your number.

If you do lose power, first check your neighborhood. If you are the only one without power, check your fuse box for tripped circuit breakers or blown fuses. If that’s not the problem, call (252) 467-4800 to report a power outage, downed power lines or any electric, gas, water or sewer emergencies.

The city uses an automated system to handle customer calls as efficiently as possible. Customers who get an automated response when calling are encouraged to use it, as it is designed to route their calls to the right destination. If you have specific information regarding damage to wires, transformers or poles, the city asks that you stay on the line to speak with a representative to provide that information.

If an extended power outage occurs, restoring power at once can cause an overload on the system, and power may be lost again. During a power outage, customers should disconnect any appliances or electronics plugged into a power source. Customers should leave one light on as a way to detect when power is restored. This will let repair crews know what services have been restored. Customers are encouraged to gradually reconnect appliances once power has been restored.

Customers may check restoration progress on Facebook by following us at facebook.com/RockyMountPublicUtilities. However, please DO NOT report outages through the city’s social media pages.

If You Detect a Gas Leak:

If you detect a gas leak, DO NOT operate electrical switches or appliances, use a telephone or cell phone, smoke or strike a match, pull plugs from outlets, or use a flashlight or lighter. Leave the home immediately and call 911 or (252) 467-4800. Dispatchers are available 24/7.

Downed Power Lines:

Downed power lines may appear dead but should always be considered energized. STAY AWAY FROM ALL DOWNED POWER LINES. Do not approach or drive over a downed line. If a power line falls on a vehicle, passengers should stay in the vehicle until help arrives. If a limb has fallen on a line, do not attempt to remove it. Additionally, parents are urged to check for downed lines in areas where their children might play. Please call (252) 467-4800 to report a downed power line, or tree limbs that have fallen on a line, and the nearest cross street to the line.

When You Drive Past Our Worksites or Vehicles:

Please slow down and be alert when driving past a city of Rocky Mount roadwork jobsite. Driving too fast can endanger employees and hamper their ability to perform important work. Employees use work area protection (i.e. traffic cones, utility work signs and flaggers) to allow them to do their jobs safely. Follow safe driving techniques to prevent fender-benders or more serious collisions that could delay our service technicians as they respond to customer calls or emergencies.

Customers with Life-Sustaining Equipment:

Individuals who rely on electricity to operate life-sustaining electronic equipment, such as a respirator or dialysis machine, should pre-register with the city of Rocky Mount. They should also inform their rescue squads and fire departments of their needs, in case of emergency. Customers with life-sustaining equipment should also have emergency back-up equipment on hand, since immediate restoration cannot be guaranteed.

Flooding:

“TURN AROUND, DON’T DROWN.”

If flooding occurs, stay away from low spots, valleys or ditches and get to higher ground as soon as possible. Never drive through a flooded area, and remember not to walk through a flooded area. It only takes six inches of moving water to knock a person down.

Information from the National Weather Service Utility Outages & Emergencies Emergency Management Restoration of Power