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DES MOINES, Iowa – (March 13, 2019) – MidAmerican Energy Company is preparing for potential flooding impacts in southwest Iowa, and urges its customers to take precautions, as the National Weather Service predicts widespread and, in some areas, potentially record flooding.
Backup power feed established in Avoca
In Pottawattamie County, MidAmerican Energy electric delivery crews have established a temporary backup power feed into Avoca, as the National Weather Service predicts the area, which includes an electrical substation, is likely to flood. An electrical substation transforms high voltage from transmission supply lines to lower distribution voltage, which connects to customers.
Emergency natural gas shutoffs
For safety reasons, MidAmerican Energy natural gas service crews have preemptively shut off service to certain customers in several areas in southwestern and western Iowa where emergency managers have ordered evacuations or determined that the areas are likely to flood.
By late afternoon, gas service crews shut off approximately two dozen customers in Avoca, Carson, Hancock and Oakland, and approximately 30 in Missouri Valley. Crews may have to shut off additional customers, depending on conditions. MidAmerican Energy notifies affected customers about their emergency shut-offs.
Company staffing crews around-the-clock in affected areas
Additionally, MidAmerican Energy electric and natural gas delivery crews are preparing to respond to flooded areas, around the clock, as needed. Company representatives are communicating with county and local emergency managers in areas that face flood threats, particularly in communities along and near the Nishnabotna River.
Customers should be aware of potential flooding impact on service and safety
Customers should be alert for how flooding could impact their electric and natural gas service, as well as their safety. Avoid standing water, which could carry electrical current from downed power lines. And anyone who smells natural gas in a building should leave immediately and call their gas provider from a safe location.
Important Safety Information
•    Low or downed wires and standing water: When approaching your home, watch for downed or low-hanging wires, and stay away from standing water. Assume that all lines are energized. Be aware that standing water can carry electrical current if there’s a nearby line that is energized. If you see any downed or low-hanging wires, do not go near them and call MidAmerican Energy. To report an electric emergency such as this, call MidAmerican Energy at 800-799-4443.
•    Leave immediately if you smell natural gas: If you smell gas at any time, leave the building immediately and call your gas company from a safe location. To report a gas leak to MidAmerican Energy, call 800-595-5325.
•    Flooded homes and basements can be dangerous: NEVER go into a flooded home or basement unless you are certain the electricity is shut off. If you are unsure whether the power is on or off, call your electric company or a professional electrician. If your home was flooded and you do not have sufficient knowledge of electrical wiring and appliances, call a professional electrician. Do not turn on any lights or appliances until an electrician has checked your home for short circuits in appliances, wiring or other electrical equipment.
•    Breakers and fuses: Before resetting breakers or replacing blown fuses, unplug electric appliances if you can do so without standing in water or on a wet surface. Do not check fuses or circuit breakers or operate any electric appliance while standing in water or on a wet surface. Cut off power at the breaker box only if you can do it safely and without standing in water.
•    Do not turn on your own service: If your property sustained damage during the event, before service can be restored, an inspection may be required by city, county or state inspectors or professional electricians or plumbers. To have your service restored after repair and inspection, call MidAmerican Energy at 800-432-0586. Assistance is available 24 hours every day. 
Sign up for Alerts
Customers can also visit www.MidAmericanEnergy.com and register for My Account to sign up to receive text alerts or email notifications to let them know when crews are projected to be working in their area, and once service is restored.
About MidAmerican Energy
MidAmerican Energy Company is an energy provider serving 770,000 electric customers and 751,000 natural gas customers in Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska and South Dakota. It is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. Information about MidAmerican Energy is available on the company’s website, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages, which can be accessed on MidAmerican Energy Company's website.
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