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Prepare Your Business
Prepare Your Business
When outages occur, Portland General Electric works to restore power as quickly as possible.
Prepare Your Business

To report an outage or electrical emergency, report online, or call 503-228-6322 in the Portland metro area, or 800-544-1795 outside Portland. See “How to Report an Outage” to learn about reporting via smart phone or text.

Stay safe. Be prepared.
Any amount of time without electricity can affect your business. Here are some tips on how to prepare for outages, minimize disruptions and protect your equipment.

  • Walk through a response plan with key employees to make sure you’re ready if your business loses power.
  • Locate your electrical supply panels and know how to shut off power.
  • Identify equipment power switches.
  • Make sure you and employees have an outage plan for all critical equipment.
  • If you have an emergency lighting system, make sure it’s in good working order.
  • Create and maintain an outage kit that includes the following items:
    • Hand-crank or battery powered flashlights and radio
    • Battery-powered clock
    • Car adaptors/chargers for cell phones and laptop computers
    • Emergency phone numbers, including PGE outage numbers
    • Extra batteries

Outage tips for critical equipment
Take these steps to protect valuable equipment and compensate for power loss.

Before an outage
  • Cash registers: Have a nonelectrical alternative as a backup.
  • Computers: Protect computers from power surges with good quality surge protectors. Prevent data loss with automatic backup programs and battery backup systems. More information is available in our Surge Protection section.
  • Electronic door locks: Ensure these can be bypassed manually.

During an outage
  • Motorized equipment: Turn equipment off to reduce the electrical load when power is restored.
  • Refrigeration: Keep refrigerators and freezers closed to minimize food loss. Freezers, when full, can keep food frozen for about two days if unopened.
  • Ventilation: Do not attempt to operate machinery if ventilation, safety or fire suppression systems are not working.

What to do if the power goes out
  • Reset breakers, or check for blown fuses. If you have both inside and outside electrical panels, reset breakers in both boxes. If these are okay, see if neighboring businesses are without power.
  • Report the outage to PGE immediately by phone, online, mobile or text. See “How to Report an Outage.”
  • Turn off electrical equipment, especially machinery with motors. This helps prevent possible power surge damage and avoids overloading the electrical system when power is restored.
  • Check for downed utility lines outside your facility and keep people away. Never touch a downed line — it doesn’t have to spark to be live and dangerous!
  • For outage updates, visit on your smart phone to see a mobile-optimized page with quick links to get an update or summary of outages. For information on major storm outages, you can also listen to the radio or follow us @PortlandGeneral on Twitter via a mobile device.
  • Call PGE again if power is restored to neighboring businesses but not yours.
  • If your lights are very dim or bright once power is restored, or if some equipment doesn’t operate properly, turn off the power at the service panel and call PGE.

Backup power
If you use a portable generator for backup power during an outage, follow generator safety rules to avoid deadly mistakes.

Wondering if a permanent standby generator is a good idea? Consult an electrician to evaluate the cots and benefits for your business.

Keep our outage brochure on hand
View a printable version of our business outage preparedness brochure (PDF). You may want to keep a copy with your outage kit for quick reference.

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