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Storm Restoration FAQs

Storm Restoration FAQs

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How can I report my outage? I’ve tried calling OPPD several times and can’t get through.

OPPD has multiple ways for customers to report outages:


Is there a way to escalate more severe issues such as snapped poles, lines on the ground, etc., versus just my power being out?

For these reports, call 1-800-554-6773. The options you choose or share with the agent will shape the code we use for the report. We use that information to prioritize accordingly.


If my neighbor reported the outage, why should I report my outage to OPPD?

It’s important that all customers report outages to assist us in determining the breadth of the outage. If your home is still without power, it’s important to let OPPD know, as the service line feeding your individual home could be damaged.  


Can’t I just report my outage on one of the social media channels?

OPPD social media sites are used for providing updates and education. These sites are not monitored by restoration crews and do not integrate with our outage system.


How do you decide priority areas and which areas where power will be restored first?

We prioritize repairs based on what will bring the greatest number of customers back on at once, not by location or neighborhood. Once large pockets of customers are restored, we address isolated cases (i.e. power disconnected from an individual home).   


What are the steps taken to restore power?

When a major outage occurs, OPPD crews kick into high gear to restore your power. Safety is our number one priority and is the reason for our methodical approach to restoration. Most of the time, several of these steps can be happening simultaneously.


Why does my neighbor have power and I don’t?

If your neighbors have power and you don’t, you could either be on a different circuit OR the service line feeding your home is damaged. Individual repairs come after all distribution and tap lines are restored.

If there is damage to your meter socket, riser conduits or weatherhead attached to the house, you’ll need to contact a licensed and bonded electrician. Information on the point of demarcation and what is the homeowner’s responsibility versus OPPD responsibility can be found here


My lines are buried, why am I still out?

Outages could be a result of damage to OPPD infrastructure providing power to your home (i.e. transformer, distribution lines, substation, etc.)


Why doesn't OPPD bury all power lines?

OPPD installs distribution lines underground and converts existing overhead lines to underground when it is practical and cost effective to do so. We strive to make the best decisions that balance near term costs with long term performance and reliability for all of our customer owners. Lines built along arterial streets may be built overhead or underground depending on a variety of factors including long-term development needs, physical space requirements, project costs and impacts to the surrounding area. In new subdivisions and commercial developments developers plan for, and typically pay an additional fee, to have their facilities installed underground. 

When existing facilities are replaced, OPPD evaluates each project on a case-by-case basis to determine if converting overhead facilities to underground is appropriate. Oftentimes, conversion of facilities to underground is more feasible in rural areas because there are fewer obstacles to contend with. In established urban areas, the process of replacing overhead lines that feed homes and businesses with underground is very costly and intrusive. Converting these facilities to underground often involves significant impacts to trees, landscaping, fences, sheds, driveways, sidewalks and roads. A full overhead-to-underground conversion also requires modifications to each home or business to change the way lines enter the building. In metropolitan areas, we share many of our poles with cable TV and internet providers to use space as efficiently as possible. If OPPD converts our facilities to underground, there is no guarantee that others will follow suit. This could result in a need to maintain both overhead and underground facilities in areas or larger, more intrusive projects to convert everything to underground.

We continually strive to improve our processes and strike the best possible balance between affordability, reliability and customer satisfaction. As major storm events provide new information we review lessons learned and incorporate them into our decision making moving forward. 


There is no damage to my house, connection or meter. No visibly down lines or tree debris in my area. What is the holdup?

Outages could be a result of damage to OPPD infrastructure providing power to your home (i.e. transformer, distribution lines, substation, etc.)


How do I know if I should call OPPD or an electrician?

If there is damage to your meter socket, riser conduits or weatherhead attached to the house, you’ll need to contact a licensed and bonded electrician. Information on the point of demarcation and what is the homeowner’s responsibility versus OPPD responsibility can be found here


Why is there no estimation for my power to come back on?

Our crews are always working as quickly and safely as possible to repair and restore services. Crews need to assess damage and they work to restore large concentrations of outages first. However, when crews arrive they are sometimes faced with situations that require more time and/or equipment needs. Until damage is assessed, it’s hard to provide an estimated time of restoration. 


What is Mutual Aid and how does that benefit me as a customer?

Mutual aid is an agreement through which other utilities offer their restoration services after natural disasters strike and cause widespread power outages. OPPD has been on both sides of the aisle. More on this agreement can be found at OPPDtheWire.com.


What is my best source for information?

The best source of information is stormandoutage.com. Links to this site, can also be found on OPPD’s home page during major outages. Updates and education can also be found by following OPPD on Facebook, OPPDCares on Twitter, OPPDstorm on Twitter and NextDoor App.


Scam? I received a call from someone threatening to cut my power if I didn't pay my bill.

This is a national scam. Utilities often see a spike in scam calls after severe weather or other power-related events, when customers may feel the most vulnerable.

OPPD warns these callers do not represent the utility. The utility never cold calls customers demanding payment. If you receive such a call, hang up, and call OPPD directly at 402-536-4131. Outside of Omaha, customers can call 1-877-536-4131, toll-free. Also, never give personal or financial information during an unsolicited call, via email or text.


I've lost perishable food while my power was out. What can I do?

Though OPPD does not reimburse for food loss, your renter's or homeowner's insurance may cover the loss.


What food resources are available to help me restock my fridge?

FOOD PANTRY RESOURCES:

Together - 812 S 24 ST
Open to public, no income requirements
Mon.-Thurs. from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Heart Ministry Center - 2221 WIRT ST
Drive-thru food pantry
Tues.-Fri from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

The Salvation Army of Omaha - 6101 NW RADIAL HWY
Mon.-Tues. & Thurs.-Fri. from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. & 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Christian Outreach Program-Elkhorn (COPE) - 1620 N 203 ST
Need to bring ID & proof of address
No restrictions other than one visit per calendar month
Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

ENCAP Nebraska - 1908 HANCOCK ST
Tues. & Thurs. from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
1st & 3rd Saturdays of the month from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Omaha Senior Pantry - 2406 FOWLER AVE
Drive-up food pantry for adults 60+
Tues. & Thurs. from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Heartland Hope Mission - 2021 U ST
Tuesday from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Thursday from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

St. Vincent de Paul - 2101 LEAVENWORTH ST
Tues. & Thurs. from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Holy Family Community Center - 1715 IZARD ST
Free clothing Mon.-Fri. from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Free sack lunches Mon.-Fri. from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

SNAP Recipients: To request replacement SNAP benefits, contact ACCESSNebraska (Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Customers that reside in Omaha should call (402) 595-1258 and customers outside of Omaha should call (800) 383-4278.

Para los clientes de habla hispana que intentan navegar por la asistencia y encontrar acceso a recursos:
Latino Center of the Midlands: 402-733-2720


What about people with medical conditions who rely on power?

It is important to have alternate plans for refrigerating medicines or using power-dependent medical devices. It may be necessary to contact a friend or family member living in the area with power to keep your equipment operating, or alternatively, go to a nearby fire station or medical facility with backup generators. In a medical emergency, please call 911.


Am I responsible for cleaning up tree debris from crews dropping them into my yard?

In most cases, OPPD crews will untangle lines from fallen trees, but they will not remove the trees. If a fallen tree has branches creating an obstruction in that air-space corridor, the homeowner should have those branches removed.


If we go without power for more than a few hours, is a partial credit or refund due for not receiving the service we're paying for?

Your Energy Charge is based on the amount of energy used during the billing period, therefore you aren’t being charged for power usage during an outage.

Your bill will reflect the Service Charge, which is the same amount every month. This charge is billed to all customers and covers OPPD's fixed costs for infrastructure and maintenance of systems. 


DON'T SEE YOUR QUESTION LISTED ABOVE?

If you have a question that is not answered in the FAQs, please call 402-536-4131 in the Omaha area, and 877-536-4131 outside of the metro area, or email customerservice@oppd.com. Customer Service hours are Mon-Fri: 7 a.m. - 8 p.m.

If you need to report a power outage, call 800-554-OPPD (6773), report online using this form, or download OPPDconnect app from the App Store or Google Play. 

Click here to view the power outage map and visit StormandOutage.com for storm restoration updates.