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East Memphis family wants answers after losing power seven times since May

MLGW told ABC24 there is no current timeline on when repairs in the family's area will take place.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A family in East Memphis family wants to know why they and their neighbors are consistently losing power, sometimes for no apparent reason. 

“Just living day-to-day wondering if the power is just going to go out for any reason,” said Shawn Sigler, who lives with his wife and two children in the area of Lynbar Avenue and Mendenhall Road. 

Sigler posted on social media Tuesday, Sept. 5, that his house has lost power seven different times since May, the latest incident coming that day. 

“I (usually) hop in my car; I drive around the surrounding area to try to identify what the problem is,” Sigler said. “There's no downlines, no downed tree limbs, and the MLGW website doesn't give us any information as to what's causing the problem.”

When storms cause a power outage, Sigler said he and his wife usually have time to prepare. But more recently, he said outages are happening without warning. 

“We're either having to determine our plan to take the kids to grandparents house … pack our food up that we bought at the grocery store into a cooler," Sigler said, "and ... my wife and I are both remote employees. Without power, we're scrambling to find a place where we can both work.” 

ABC24 reached out to Memphis Light Gas and Water, which said the following in a statement: 

“Our electric system has sustained a lot of damage this year due to weather events and we are still making repairs.

 The circuit that feeds Mr. Sigler’s neighborhood has suffered four major events, a few due to broken poles.

 Our engineers do have plans to make some improvements to the feed for Mr. Sigler’s neighborhood which will make it more resilient.

 Mr. Sigler and any other customers who are having multiple outages are encouraged to call our Power Quality and Reliability area at 528-4544.

 Also, we are in the middle of our 5 Year Improvement Plan and have three areas we are focused on to improve reliability & resiliency:

  1. Trimming trees

  2. Replacing outdated infrastructure

  3. Modernizing the distribution grid”

“I'm thankful that they've identified the problem and that they have plans to resolve the root cause,” Sigler said. “I know everyone over there is working really hard.”

But at the same time, he also said he’d like to see more transparency from MLGW. 

“Communicating out the plan to fix it, communicating out a timeframe on when that could happen,” Sigler said, listing examples. 

He said it is problems like this that make even a native Memphian like him consider moving his family out of the city. 

“It’s a negative outlook on wanting to stay within the city limits,” Sigler says, 

MLGW told ABC24 there is no current timeline on when those repairs in the Lynbar avenue area will take place. 

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