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Natural Gas Service in Belknap Township Experiencing Interruption

Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op (PIE&G) crews were working to repair a natural gas main valve this morning when a leak occurred, causing an interruption to approximately 115 services. Crews on site responded immediately to shut off supply to the main. Emergency responders were notified and arrived to help secure the scene to insure public safety.  There were no injuries and only minor damage to PIE&G’s equipment.

Repairs are underway and barring complications, PIE&G anticipates that service will be restored later this evening. PIE&G will be contacting affected members in Belknap Township (Presque Isle County) with additional information.

PIE&G members should be aware of the safety precautions in a natural gas emergency.  If you smell natural gas (a rotten egg odor) or suspect a leak, remember:

  • Leave the area immediately.
  • Don't try to locate the source of the leak.
  • Don't use an electric or electronic device or open flames.

Call 9-1-1 and contact PIE&G immediately at (800) 423-6634 to report a suspected gas leak emergency.  

PIE&G and CoBank Partner for Matching Grant Program

The Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op Board of Directors recently approved annual participation in Co-Bank’s “Sharing Success” program, a $3 million charitable fund designed to benefit cooperatives and the charitable groups they support throughout rural America.  CoBank is a non-profit, cooperative bank that PIE&G uses and is a member of.  Under the program, CoBank matches contributions by its cooperative members to the charitable organizations of their choice on a dollar-for-dollar basis up to $5,000.  CoBank requires that the charitable organization is established as a non-profit under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Service code. Other potentially eligible organizations include schools, churches, and government organizations, as long as the donation serves a public purpose and is consistent with the program’s purpose and guidelines.  Organizations that are political in nature, that limit their activities based on religious affiliation, or discriminate do not qualify.

Applications for the 2017 Sharing Success Program will be accepted from Monday, July 17 through Friday, September 1.  PIE&G will select the eligible applicant or applicants by September 30 and submit them to CoBank for consideration. CoBank reserves the right to review and determine eligibility of the recipient organizations.

The application form must be completed in its entirety, and is available at www.pieg.com/content/sharing-success. Completed applications should be mailed to:  PIE&G Cobank Sharing Success, PO Box 308, Onaway MI 49765 or emailed to ddemaestri@pieg.com.  A copy of the designated charity’s IRS 501(c)(3) tax exemption notification must be included with the application. If the organization is not a 501(c)(3), please submit the organization’s taxpayer identification number (TIN), also referred to as an employer identification number (EIN).  Questions may be directed to Deanna at 800-423-6634 extension 1011.

Severe Thunderstorm Sunday Causes Major Power Outages

Severe thunderstorms swept through the UP and Michigan’s northern lower peninsula Sunday afternoon leaving approximately 4,830 Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op services without power.  Wind speeds of 60 mph were reported along with hail and driving rain, snapping trees and branches onto overhead  power lines. The hardest hit areas were Cheboygan and Presque Isle Counties including Mullet Lake, Cheboygan, Tower, Millersburg, Fingerboard Corners, Black Lake and Hawks. There were also outages in Montmorency County near Atlanta and Canada Creek. PIE&G crews were dispatched early and with  the help of Wolverine Power, linemen worked through the night and have already restored power to approximately 4,600 services. Currently, PIE&G has approximately 232 outages, most of which are near Black Lake, Bois Blanc Island and Mullet Lake.

More storms are predicted this afternoon. PIE&G anticipates delays in repair times over the next several days to replace broken poles and for tree removals from lines. Members who are currently without power should make preparations accordingly.  PIE&G has all available personnel working and will  continue restoration efforts.  

PIE&G members should contact PIE&G immediately at (800) 423-6634 to report their power outage or any downed power lines.  Residents are cautioned to stay at least 25 feet away from any downed wires and to report them immediately to PIE&G or a local law enforcement agency. 

NRECA Celebrates its 75th Anniversary

Because our Cooperative roots run deep...

To honor PIE&G’s partnership and to help celebrate the 75th anniversary of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, the NRECA will plant a commemorative tree at its Arlington headquarters and Lincoln office in soil collected from each of the member cooperatives. 

Recently, PIE&G sent a small soil sample from our cooperative to NRECA so they can plant a tree in our honor – one whose nourishment and growth is supported by PIE&G and other coops across the nation which helped the NRECA grow to become 75 years strong!

 

Planting a 75th anniversary tree

Perform An Annual Safety Inspection On Your Boat And Dock To Prevent Electric Shock

For boating and water safety, there are items you must legally have on your watercraft—life vests, a fire extinguisher, throwable flotation devices, and properly working lights—but make sure the boat and the dock are safe, too. Sadly, there have been incidents of electric shock drownings. It happens when a current, often from a short circuit in the wiring of boats or in a dock, spreads through the water. As a result, those who are in the water will be electrocuted and end up drowning. 

To help prevent accidents, the National Electrical Contractors Association says:

  • All installations should be performed by a professional electrical contractor.
  • All dock receptacles must comply with the National Electrical Code, which mandates a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI). A GFCI measures a circuit’s current and senses any imbalance (such as a discharge into the water), which trips the GFCI and cuts off the power.
  • Test any GFCIs every month. Locate them along the ramp to the dock so they can be easily tested by local fire departments.
  • Metal dock frames should have “bonding jumpers” that connect all metal parts to an on-shore grounding rod. This means any dock part that becomes energized by electrical malfunction will trip the GFCI or circuit breaker.
  • Ask neighbors if their dock electrical systems have been inspected and are up to code.
  • Household wire is not suitable for boats.
  • Do not use wire nuts (these are for solid conductor wire, which should never be on a boat) or splice connectors which can cut wire strands!
  • Fuses are rated to protect the wire, not the stereo. If a fuse blows continuously, something else is wrong.
  • If you rent a dock or boat, notify the owner of safety violations immediately.
  • Have your boat’s system (especially with onboard generators) checked at least annually and when something is added or removed.
  • Ropes, string, masts and rigging also conduct electricity—don’t be the common ground between water and electricity!

See SafeElectricity.org for more tips.

Boat dock safety

Winds Damage Wolverine Power Equipment - Affects 1042 Services In Onaway

May 8, 2017 –  On Saturday, May 6, approximately 1042 Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op (PIE&G) service locations in and around Onaway experienced a power interruption at 5:11 p.m. Wolverine Power Supply Cooperative (Wolverine) found  equipment at the Onaway substation that had been damaged by the strong winds.  Wolverine promptly made repairs and power was restored to those affected at 7 pm. 

Wolverine, located in Cadillac, is the wholesale energy supplier to PIE&G, one of seven distribution cooperatives in the lower peninsula of Michigan served by Wolverine.  PIE&G provides electric and natural gas service to approximately 42,000 member-owners in a nine county area of northeast Michigan.   PIE&G headquarters is located in Onaway.

PIE&G Communities First Fund Board Awards $15,500 in Scholarships to Area High School Grads

April 27, 2017 (Onaway) Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op members continue to assist area community organizations and individuals through the voluntary round up of their electric and natural gas billings. Member contributions to the PIE&G Communities First Fund (“CFF”) provide resources for grants and scholarships to benefit their local communities in PIE&G’s service area.

At their recent meeting, the CFF board of directors awarded fifteen (15) scholarships of $1,000 each to each of the following 2017 high school graduates:

ALMONT                                                            INLAND LAKES          

Sydney Torres                                                    MacKenzie Hemmer

Hayley Torres                                                     Regan Bunker

ALPENA                                                              JOHANNESBURG-LEWISTON

Trevor Roznowski                                              Destiny Pryor

                                                                             Kristin McCormick

ATLANTA                                                             ONAWAY

Brianna Gross                                                     Cameron Horn

Tiffany Juergens                                                 Noel Nash

Enrico Racz-Reene        

CHEBOYGAN                                                      POSEN

Jeffrey Ostman Jr.                                              Izaiah Hincka

                                                                            WOLVERINE

                                                                            Teah Lowe

 

In addition to the above scholarships, the A. Barkley Travis Memorial Scholarship, valued at $500, was awarded Ashley Wirgau of Rogers City.

The PIE&G Communities First Fund is managed by an all volunteer, independent board of directors. Students must meet CFF scholarship program requirements. For more information, go to the 'Communities First' tab on this website and follow the the link to Scholarships.

Wolverine Power Transmission Outage Affects PIE&G members

April 26, 2017 - Approximately 12,000 Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op (PIE&G) members lost power at 6:53 a.m. due to a transmission problem on Wolverine Power’s lines.  Wolverine Power Cooperative is PIE&G’s wholesale energy supplier.  The transmission outage affected all members served from six of PIE&G’s distribution substations in Cheboygan, Mullet Lake, Fingerboard, Tower, Black Lake and Hammond Bay. Wolverine’s crews were able to isolate the problem and reroute transmission to restore power to affected PIE&G members at 8:21 a.m.

Wolverine Power Cooperative, located in Cadillac, serves seven distribution cooperatives across Michigan’s lower peninsula. Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op provides electric and natural gas service to approximately 42,000 member-owners in a nine county area of northeast Michigan.   PIE&G headquarters is located in Onaway, Michigan.

WOLVERINE POWER TRANSMISSION OUTAGE THIS MORNING

Approximately 6,650 Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op (PIE&G) members were without power this morning due to a problem on Wolverine Power’s transmission lines. The transmission outage is affecting members served by PIE&G’s distribution substations primarily in Cheboygan, Mullet Lake, Fingerboard, Tower, Black Lake and Hammond Bay. PIE&G crews are assisting Wolverine crews to restore as safely and as promptly as possible. 

Thank a Lineworker

As the “first responders” of the electric co-op family, lineworkers perform around-the-clock duties in dangerous conditions and challenging situations to keep power flowing and protect the public’s safety. These brave members of our community go above and beyond to restore power to their neighborhoods and towns, often in the most hazardous environment. That’s why electric co-ops have designated the second Monday in April as National Lineman Appreciation Day. This year, April 10 is the day we honor the hard-working men and women who keep the lights on.

Resolutions adopted by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) explain it best: “Whereas linemen leave their families and put their lives on the line every day to keep the power on; Whereas linemen work 365 days a year under dangerous conditions to build, maintain and repair the electric infrastructure; Whereas there would be no electric co-ops without the brave men and women who comprise our corps of lineworkers.” Lineworkers everywhere deserve this special day of recognition.

These highly-skilled men and women light our homes and businesses every day. They endure harsh weather and long hours, all to make our lives more comfortable. On April 10 (and every day), please take a moment to thank them. Lineworkers are the heart of the co-op nation, proud and strong.

Use #ThankALineman on social media to show your support for the men and women who light our lives.

From PIE&G's March-April 2017 issue of Country Lines Magazine, page 12

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