Oncor Preparing for Hurricane Ike's Impact on Coast, North Texas

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With Hurricane Ike approaching the Texas Coast with winds of up to 125 mph, Oncor is taking all the necessary precautions to be prepared for the problems that the hurricane might bring to its service area.

Our crews are anticipating and preparing for the worst while the priority in this situation is safety for both our crews and the people we serve. Oncor's system reliability comes first, but we are in constant contact with other utilities in Texas to assess needs.

Oncor is studying the progress of the storm and alerting contractors and employees to be prepared for potential extended outages, which in some locations could last up to several days, due to the damage that Hurricane Ike could cause. Oncor crews and contractors are preparing for departure to areas where their assistance is needed the most.

"With a storm of this magnitude, outages will be unavoidable," said Brenda Pulis, Oncor Senior Vice President, Distribution. "Our crews are anticipating and preparing for the worst while the priority in this situation is safety for both our crews and the people we serve. Oncor's system reliability comes first, but we are in constant contact with other utilities in Texas to assess needs."

Even for areas not directly on the coast, such as in North Texas, Oncor is still bracing for Ike's effects. Initial reports predict sustained winds of 40 mph in North Texas. These winds would be strong enough to blow tree limbs and debris into power lines, causing potentially extensive outages.

In East Texas, consumers in Oncor's service area are expecting winds up to 70 mph, with the worst part of the storm hitting on Saturday starting at 3 a.m. Oncor is prepared for outages in this area, as well.

During storms it is important to remember these tips:

Consumers should call the outage phone number on their electric bill to report the power is out, so that Oncor has a record of the outage, especially in remote areas. Consumers can help by having the last seven numbers of ESI ID from their electric bill when reporting the outage. Beware of power lines — contact with power lines can seriously injure or even kill someone. If you see a downed power line, leave the area and call 9-1-1. In addition to the downed line potentially being electrified, anything touching the power line, such as a tree branch, could also be electrified. Do not touch the power line or anything else touching it. Avoid debris lying on the ground, as it may conceal downed power lines. Make sure there are no downed lines before allowing children out to play. When leaving your home and the power is off, turn off the main breaker as a precaution until power is restored. Additionally, having a storm safety kit on hand can help consumers prepare for whenever an electrical outage occurs. Storm safety kits should include a combination of the following: flashlight, bottled water, radio, pen and paper, extra batteries and a storm safety card from http://www.oncor.com/safety. Most of these items can be found in hardware stores.

Oncor is a regulated electric distribution and transmission business that provides reliable electricity delivery to consumers. Oncor operates the largest distribution and transmission system in Texas, providing power to 3 million electric delivery points over more than 102,000 miles of distribution and 14,000 miles of transmission lines. While Oncor is a subsidiary of Energy Future Holdings Corp., Oncor is a separate entity with a separate board that is comprised of a majority of independent directors.

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Megan Wright
Oncor
972-791-6200
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