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Street lights out? There’s an app for that

Electric Cooperative lets customers use smartphone technology to report street light outages

POSTED: January 18, 2012 4:00 a.m.

In a society that is constantly becoming more reliant on technology, Sawnee EMC is joining the movement with a new street light outage reporting application for smartphones.

The electric cooperative had already launched an online application and will soon release its smartphone application, said Sawnee EMC Vice President of Member Services Blake House.

The application will allow the cooperative's customers to report outages of its about 40,000 street lights quickly with the application, he said.

The corporation provides service to more than 80,000 customers in Dawson, Hall, Forsyth and Lumpkin counties, as well as 70,000 customers in three additional counties.

"This is just a new thing that allows people to report a street light outage or any kind of issue with a street light via their mobile phone without having to speak to an individual or stay on hold," House said.

Street light outages are a daily occurrence and most often are repaired in a day's time, House said.

The feature will be included in Sawnee EMC's current smartphone application that allows members to view energy data and access other account information.

The tool was developed to provide customers with a "quick and simple" method of reporting issues such as lights that are out, flickering or damaged.

"It might be flickering due to a ballast issue, it could be wiring or it could be damaged or leaning because somebody hit it," he said. "It could be any kind of issue with a street light."

The application not only is beneficial to residents, but also government officials who must report outages along city streets, House said.

Since the online application was released, he said, "It has been working slick as a button."

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