Ice & Snow Storms
Providing light, comfort, and warmth despite winter weather
MTE works around the clock to ensure your power is on so you can keep your home, business, and community warm during even the worst winter weather. While MTE maintains a 99.9% reliability rating across our territory every year, we can still sometimes experience outages and power interruptions caused by tornadoes, high winds, ice and snowstorms.
Our systems control center is monitoring our electrical grid 24/7 using an advanced metering infrastructure ¬and smart grid technology to identify and restore outages remotely whenever possible. They also dispatch operations and engineering teams to fix damages on-site when outages occur and need equipment or materials to repair them.
When you experience an outage, we probably know your meter isn’t working. However, we encourage you to report your outage still or report other power interruptions like flickering, blinking, or other issues with your electric service.
Service Concerns Frequently Asked Questions
Our crews work around the clock until all members have power. MTE follows a three-step process recognized as an industry best practice. Hospitals, police departments, fire stations, and other public health and safety facilities are priority one.
- Step 1 - Repairs are made at substations and on the main distribution lines that come out of the substations.
- Step 2 - Crews fix damage to tap lines that branch off from these main lines.
- Step 3 - Power is restored to pockets of members and then to individual homes.
Check out the infographic to learn more about the steps to restoring power!
The most efficient way for our crews to restore power is to begin from the substation and work toward individual homes. After the main circuits are functioning, we turn our efforts to repairing feeders or taps that will restore power to the greatest number of members. Then we concentrate our repair efforts on those whose power was not restored when the main circuits and taps were repaired.
There could be several reasons. First, there may be damage to the service wires leading only to your home. These wires don't affect your neighbor's electric supply. Second, MTE circuits can sometimes have complex feeds, so your neighbor's home may be served by a different circuit than your home. Finally, there may also be as many as three different phases on the pole in front of your home. Your neighbor may get service from a different phase than you.
MTE has an automated outage management system that is connected 24/7 to a toll-free outage reporting line. When you dial 1-877-777-9111, your call is routed through a computer. You will be asked to enter your account number, meter number or the phone number associated with your account. Also, there is an option to speak your address if the numbers do not work. The system generates a notice to our 24-hour Control Center personnel, and a crew is dispatched to restore power. Our automated line allows us to process more calls and get electricity back on more promptly for all members.
After a storm or other incident that causes power outages, MTE can pinpoint transmission lines, substations and major distribution circuits that have been damaged. However, if you suspect your outage is an isolated situation, report it right away by calling 1-877-777-9111.
Check your circuit breakers or fuses to see if it's an isolated problem. Next, examine your meter. If the meter box or any wires look damaged, call a certified electrician. They may need to make repairs before MTE can reconnect power. If you don't find any problems, call our outage reporting line at 1-877-777-9111 and enter your account number, meter number or telephone number associated to your electric account.
According to the USDA, a fully stocked freezer will stay cold for two days. A half-full freezer will keep items frozen for one day. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold four hours after power is lost. Be sure to check the temperature inside your fridge once electricity is restored to determine if the food is safe to eat. The refrigerator should be at or below 40 degrees with the freezer at or below zero degrees.
MTE is responsible for delivering power to your home's connection point. You are responsible for repairs from the meter into your home, including wires located in a mast riser. If service has been pulled away from your house, a qualified electrician must make the repairs before power can be turned back on. In certain cases, an inspection by your local code authority may be necessary.
No. As a not-for-profit and local electric cooperative, our individual members are treated equally during the restoration process. The primary focus of our operation team is restoring power as quickly and effectively as possible. Critical infrastructure like hospitals, nursing homes, and first responder organizations are prioritized for public safety. All other outages are prioritized based on restoration efficiency.
No. MTE will not turn off power unless instructed by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and, in some cases, emergency management authorities. In the interest of safety, we will not attempt to restore service until conditions improve.
If you or a family member rely on an electrical life-sustaining medical device in your home, call our member services team at 1-877-777-9020 Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., to learn how we can add you to our medical priority list. In some cases, severe weather can damage the electrical system to the point that it may take days to fix. If your life depends on electricity, it's vitally important to have an emergency back-up plan in place.
You can learn more about our life support program at MTEMC.com/LifeSupportProgram.
Any line lying on the ground should be considered live, so never go near downed power lines. Please call our member service team at 1-877-777-9020, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., to report a downed power line. Please call 911 if anyone is in immediate danger.
Yes. You should never operate a generator inside your home. Keep it outside for proper ventilation. Only a qualified, licensed electrician should attempt to hook up a generator to the main electric panel of your home or business. If it's connected improperly, power can "back-feed" onto utility lines. For safety reasons, please notify us at 1-877-777-9020, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., if you have a generator connected to your electric entrance.
If a tree or limb falls and results in an outage, leave the work to us. If the line is sparking, please report the emergency by calling 911.
You can report your outdoor light outages and issues online at MTEMC.com/OutdoorLights or report it through our member services team at 877-777-9020. We also offer an automated reporting option by calling 877-777-9111.