New York State Electric and Gas is taking advantage of the latest winter storm to remind customers of storm safety guidelines.To report downed power lines call 1-800-572-1131.

Before storms hit, residents should keep flashlights, a battery-powered radio and fresh batteries on hand, have at leasst one telephone that is not dependent on electricity, keep a supply of non-perishable food and bottled water in the home and make sure cell phone batteries are charged.

During a storm, major appliances like electric water heaters, refigerators and freeze and sensitive electronic equipment like computers turned off to prevent overloading and possible damage when power is restored. Don't use a natural gas or propane range to heat the home.

After power is restored, do not go into a basement that is flooded. Contact an electrician and plumber to check appliances before having NYSEG turn the power back on.  Turn appliances and sensitive equipment on one at a time to avoid overloading circuits. Restock any emergency supplies used during the storm.

Remember to stay away from any down lines. Assume they are live power lines and report immediately to NYSEG or local emergency services officials.