How We Restore Power

After a storm causes widespread power outages, Chelan PUD works to restore power quickly and safely to customers. Learn more about our power restoration process. 

Step 1

Getting the power back on safely takes planning. During and after a storm, small crews will de-energize downed lines and handle emergencies; others will assess the damage as it can be done safely. Then, with a plan in hand, crews start work on restoring electric service.
Graphic of Step 1 for power restoration

Step 2

Transmission towers and lines supply power to one or more switchyards. These high-voltage lines seldom fail, but they can be damaged by severe wind. One line can serve tens of thousands of people. If one of these lines is damaged, it would get attention first.
Graphic of Step 2 for power restoration

Step 3

Chelan County PUD has 36 substations, each can serve up to several thousand homes and businesses. When there is a major outage, the distribution substations are checked to see if it’s a transmission problem getting power to the substation, or a problem at the substation.
Graphic of Step 3 for power restoration

Step 4

Main distribution lines carry power from substations into a central point in a neighborhood. When power is restored on distribution lines, whole neighborhoods and business districts may see the lights come back on as long as there are no problems further down the line.
Graphic of Step 4 for power restoration

Step 5

Power lines off main distribution lines carry electricity to utility poles or underground transformers serving one to several homes or businesses. PUD crews move to working on these lines after repairs to the main distribution lines are done and prioritize locations based on getting the largest number of customers back in service.
Graphic of Step 5 for power restoration

Sometimes there will be storm damage on every service line between houses and the nearby pole-mounted or underground transformer to houses. As repairs to individual services are made you may see that your neighbor has power and you don’t. If that’s the case, call the PUD at 1 (877) 783-8123 to let them know your situation.

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