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1-27-2014 - Peak Demand Alert

Contact:           Diana Hersch, director of marketing and communications
Direct line:        419-257-5011      Cell: 419-509-3290
Date:               January 27, 2014


Hancock-Wood Electric Co-op issues Peak Demand Alert, load control expected for tomorrow morning


North Baltimore, OH–January 27, 2014–At 4:00 pm., today, January 27, Hancock-Wood Electric Cooperative (HWEC) issued a Peak Demand Alert for the hours between 7 and 10 a.m., tomorrow, Tuesday, January 28, due to continuing sub-zero temperatures. It is highly likely that load control will be conducted during these times and could extend slightly beyond this timeframe.

President and CEO George Walton stated, “The alert is to urge both commercial and residential members to reduce electricity use during those periods and likely will coincide with the activation of automatic load control switches. This action is not a shortage of power but a cost-savings measure for co-op members. A portion of what Hancock-Wood pays for electricity is determined by peak demand, so Members’ participation in controlling electric use helps us to keep electric rates stable.”

Load control switches on heat-pumps, geothermal units and water heaters likely will be activated across the state, affecting all 10 districts in the Hancock-Wood service area located in portions of Hancock, Wood, Allen, Erie, Hardin, Henry, Putnam, Sandusky, Seneca and Wyandot counties. Heat pump units equipped with these load control switches will be cycled off and on for brief periods of time, in rotation, so that the peak demand is kept under control.

A member whose electric water heater is equipped with a control switch will see a red light activate on the gray box located on each unit, indicating the load is being temporarily deferred. The member may continue to draw hot water; however, the water heater will not reheat until the load-shedding period concludes. When heat pump load control switches are activated, the pump will be cycled off for eight to 12 minutes every one-half hour. The fan will continue to operate during this period so that comfort in the home is maintained.

A typical residential member with installed controls might see his or her home temperature temporarily lowered by approximately 4 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit, but it will return to the desired temperature before significant discomfort is felt, said Walton. Members without control switches are asked to lower their thermostat temperatures by 2 to 3 degrees Fahrenheit during this period and to delay use of higher-demand appliances such as hair dryers, dishwashers, and clothes washers and clothes dryers. Commercial Members are asked to lower thermostats by 2 to 3 degrees as well as reduce lighting to conserve electricity.

Weather forecasts predict below zero temperatures continuing during the week, which may prompt the necessity of another issuance of a load control alert.

For more information, visit the Hancock-Wood Electric Cooperative web site at, visit our Facebook pages for the mainland and for Kelleys Island, or call 800-445-4840.


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