Below are some commonly asked questions about how Fayette Electric is preparing and responding to the COVID-19 coronavirus:
Electric co-ops have a strong track record of preparing for a variety of emergencies that could impact the ability to deliver electricity. For weeks, FEC has taken proactive steps to prepare for the evolving coronavirus challenges, which may affect one in every eight Americans, while maintaining our commitment to the members and communities we serve.
This situation is unique from other business continuity planning but FEC, just like many other co-ops, has a pandemic plan that we implemented on March 10.
While we are not disconnecting service and your power will remain on, please contact FEC at (979) 968-3181 or 1-866-968-3181 to discuss payment options or we can refer you to an organization that may be able to assist you. If you are affected by financial hardship, we do encourage you to pay as much as possible and take steps to use less energy to avoid accumulating a larger balance that could become overly burdensome. Please be aware that electric bills are not being waived and will require payment at some point, but we will work with members to resolve past due accounts.
FEC recommends these energy-saving tips to save on your electric bill:
- Program your thermostat to maximize energy savings. Setting your thermostat one degree higher when cooling can reduce energy use by up to 5 percent. Since A/C usage makes up the greatest percentage of utility bills, keeping thermostats set at 78 degrees during the day and using ceiling fans to keep cool will have the biggest impact on usage.
- Do full loads of laundry and wash with cold water. Using warm water instead of hot can cut a load’s energy use in half and using cold water will save even more.
- Air/hand dry dishes. This step can cut your dishwasher’s energy use by up to 50 percent.
- Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Small appliances and electronics use energy even when not in use. When powered on, game consoles, televisions and similar electronics are responsible for up to 12 percent of energy use.
- Consider grilling in the backyard instead of using the oven to save energy and reduce the amount of heat generated in the house (so your A/C doesn’t have to work as hard).
- Monitor your FEC usage using SmartHub, a free app available to download on your mobile device and/or login on our website.
In response to the coronavirus, FEC has implemented our business continuity and pandemic response plan. Additional preparations to promote the health and safety of employees include:
- Implementing increased hygiene measures
- Closing the lobby to the public to prevent the spread of the disease
- Planning for facility and/or office decontamination, if necessary
- Reviewing staffing needs to ensure continuity of critical business functions
- Implementing daily temperature screening protocols
FEC has already implemented measures, such as increasing hygiene measures and separating line crews into shifts, to protect essential staff and mitigate any potential disruptions caused by illness.
FEC and other co-ops in the electric sector operate with a sophisticated mutual assistance program that enables the sharing of resources and expertise during emergency situations. Many co-ops like FEC also utilize contractor crews during severe weather events.