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  • Hawaiian Electric Companies Prepare For Hurricane Season, Urge Customers To Gather Supplies, Solidify Plans

Hawaiian Electric Companies prepare for hurricane season, urge customers to gather supplies, solidify plans New emergency preparedness handbook, keiki-friendly booklet available

The 2018 Central Pacific hurricane season starts today and could bring up to six tropical cyclones -- are you prepared? Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaiʻi Electric Light urge customers, both residential and commercial, to ready themselves and their properties for potential storms.

The companies work year-round to strengthen our island grids so that they are better able to withstand powerful storms. We've spent more than $1.5 billion since 2011 to upgrade and reinforce poles, lines and equipment. Last year alone, more than $18 million was spent on clearing trees and vegetation from around power lines and equipment across all three utilities, resulting in fewer and briefer outages during storms.

To help customers prepare for hurricane season, the companies have updated their Handbook for Emergency Preparedness. The updated version and a keiki-friendly booklet featuring Maka the Super Safety Hero are available at https://www.hawaiianelectric.com/prepare.

Printed copies of the Handbook for Emergency Preparedness will be available for pickup at public libraries on Oʻahu and at City Mill stores. You may also call Hawaiian Electric at 543-7511 for copies of the publications.

Customers should develop their own plans and consider these following tips:

• Gather emergency supplies, such as a battery-powered radio, flashlights, lanterns, and batteries. Be prepared to monitor storm-related communications issued over emergency broadcast radio stations.

• Store enough water, non-perishable food, medicine, and personal hygiene supplies for your family members and pets to last at least 14 days.

• Routinely use high-quality surge protectors to help protect household appliances that incorporate electronics, computer equipment, home entertainment systems, and motors.

• Turn off and unplug all unnecessary electric appliances and equipment during a storm or a power outage. When power comes back and is s• If your power goes out during a storm, use flashlights or chemical light sticks instead of candles or kerosene lamps as open flames may create a fire hazard.

• Shut off your electricity at the main breaker or switch if you need to evacuate.

• Consider having a backup generator if you are dependent on an electrically-powered life support system. Or, make plans to go to an alternate location where electricity will be available. Be prepared to take your medical equipment and medications with you.

• If your business or residence is equipped with a backup generator, learn how to properly operate the device to avoid causing damage or injury.

• Prepare a list of emergency contacts that includes phone numbers for insurance agents, vendors, physicians or any other important individuals.

• If you see a downed power line, assume it is energized and dangerous. Stay away from downed power lines -- at least 30 feet or more.

• For power outage updates, follow the companies on Twitter: #OahuOutage, #MauiOutage, #LanaiOutage, #MolokaiOutage, #BigIslandOutage




About Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO)
For more than 100 years, Hawaiian Electric Company has provided the energy that has fueled the islands' development from a Hawaiian kingdom to a modern state. Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc. (HECO), and its subsidiaries, Maui Electric Company, Ltd. (MECO), and Hawaii Electric Light Company, Inc. (HELCO), serves 95% of the state's 1.2 million residents on the islands of O`ahu, Maui, Hawai`i Island, Lana`i and Moloka`i.

The energy we use is an essential but limited resource necessary to maintaining our quality of life. In a changing world, Hawaiian Electric has evolved to offer more than electricity.

Today, the company also provides energy solutions to help customers save money and use energy more efficiently. Hawaiian Electric also continues to pursue the use of more clean, renewable energy alternatives to help ensure a sustainable future for our islands.

COMMUNITY COMMITMENT

Hawaiian Electric Company is dedicated to our community in which we live, work and serve. Rooted in Hawaii and one of the largest companies in the State, Hawaiian Electric takes the concept of malama pono -- to care for and serve -- to heart. The company and our employees have a long tradition of contributing with dollars, time and talent. Corporate citizenship is crucial to Hawaiian Electric's overall business plan because strong communities are essential to the success of the company, our employees and our customers.

Company and employee volunteerism is encouraged and every month, employees walk, run or provide manpower to dozens of non-profits throughout the State. Hawaiian Electric's corporate giving philosophy gives priority to projects that help families, promote education and protect the environment.

The company also sponsors robotics programs and events that promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) education, as well as the SunPower for Schools program bringing solar electric power to select schools, the Solar Sprint event where students design, build and race cars using solar power, and the Home Energy Challenge, a school-based competition encouraging elementary school students and their families to reduce energy use at home, among other programs.

For nearly a decade, Hawaiian Electric volunteers have provided manpower, bucket trucks and ladders to install Christmas lights at the Kaimuki Community Park and playground before the annual Kaimuki Christmas Parade in December.

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