If the Lights Go Out

Sometimes it’s a squirrel on a transformer, a lightning strike or even a power surge to cause an outage at your home or business. And sometimes, tornadoes, ice storms, heavy winds and lightning storms can cause widespread outages.

Whether the lights go out in one home, a whole neighborhood or even a larger area, Ripley Power and Light follows a plan to restore power as quickly and safely as possible.


The first step in any outage is to assess the extent of the problem and make sure any downed lines are not hazardous.

Outage Management System

Our Outage Management System enables us to pinpoint the location of your home if you have updated the phone numbers in your account and you are calling or texting from one of those numbers to report an outage.

Larger Outages

With larger outages, the underlying goal is to first restore power safely to the greatest number of customers in the shortest time possible.

Transmission Lines

Problems on transmission lines and at electric substations are fixed first since they can affect large number of customers and whole communities.

Essential Services

We also give priority to services that are critical to the public’s health and safety, such as the hospital, nursing homes, water treatment plants and customers who depend on life support. (You can get your name on our priority list if you have a doctor’s statement saying you are dependent on life support equipment.)

Feeder Lines

We then fix problems on feeder lines that leave substations. Like branches on a tree, feeder lines serve many smaller lines that go down individual roads or to small groups of houses.

We work our way across the system, first repairing problems serving larger groups of customers to gradually repairing problems serving smaller groups. It does no good to fix a problem on a line providing electricity to only a few homes if the line serving it still does not have power. 

Individual Homes

Finally, we repair damage to service lines to individual homes. Again, making a repair to an individual home first is useless if the main line into the neighborhood has no power.

Sometimes, we can’t restore power to your home if there is damage to electrical equipment that you own, such as the wiring from the meter box to inside your home. You will need to call a licensed electrician first. (For a graphic explaining what you are responsible for, visit

Ripley Power and Light employees always are on call to respond to emergencies. When major emergencies occur, more employees are called in to help.