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Town of Saugeen Shores and Power Outages in Ontario

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The Ontario Electrical Emergency Plan

The Province of Ontario and the Independent Electricity Market Operator (IMO) have in place an Ontario Electricity Emergency Plan that is used in the event of a large-scale electricity emergency in Ontario. The IMO, in consultation with the Ministry of Energy, can declare an electricity emergency.

The IMO has a three-level media advisory process to alert the public to any power disruptions. Westario Power and Hydro One can also be expected to issue media advisories to address Town of Saugeen Shores or specific issues.

Power Advisory:

This is issued when electricity is in tight supply. All electricity consumers and industries are asked to voluntarily reduce their electricity consumption.

Power Warning:

This is issued when there is an elevated level of concern about the reliability of the electricity supply and the IMO is implementing emergency control actions. All electricity consumers, including industries, are asked to immediately reduce their electricity consumption. Any further unforeseen increase in electricity demand, or reduction in supply, may result in the need to implement load shedding. Load shedding means that electricity supply to consumers will be disrupted on a rotating basis across the province for approximately 30 minutes to an hour depending on the extent of the electricity shortfall. Under these circumstances, advance warning may not be possible.

Power Emergency:

This is issued when the IMO must, as a last resort, implement load shedding.

Hydro One and Westario Power Emergency Preparedness

Plans exist to deal with the three level processes of Power Advisory, Power Warning and Power Emergency as defined in the Ontario Electricity Emergency Plan. Plans also exist to deal with localized emergencies or disasters which can be caused by nature, humans or technology.

Processes are in place to identify, assess and respond to the emergency or disaster. They ensure that the public will be notified regarding the status of the utilities at regular intervals.

Plans make allowance for Hydro One and Westario Power to work closely with the Town of Saugeen Shores and their Emergency Control Group if the electricity emergency is found to be a community emergency.

Some of the ways citizens of Saugeen Shores can prepare for a power outage:

Listen to the media for information from the province, Hydro One and Westario Power regarding power advisories, warnings and emergencies.

  • Have a battery-operated, portable radio and extra batteries so that you can receive emergency information if power is interrupted.
  • Prepare an Emergency Survival Kit in advance so you can be ready for any emergency. There you will find a ‘Guide to Family Emergency Preparedness’ which will assist you. (Also available in library branches)
  • Have one telephone in your home or business that is not cordless available for use. Cordless telephones require electricity to operate and do not operate when the power is off.
  • Remember that it is very important not to use emergency 9-l-l phone lines to report a power outage. These lines are needed for medical, fire and police emergencies.
  • Learn how to potentially reduce electricity consumption by visiting http://hydroone.com or http://www.westario.com/

For more information about electricity in Ontario, visit these sites: