MLGW Crews Working To Restore Power

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(Memphis) The winter storm is to blame for keeping tens of thousands in Memphis without power and in the cold while temps dropped way down to the teens.

In the snow, sleet, and slick ice, Memphis Light, Gas, and Water crews worked all over the county.

“We don't want our customers to be without services longer than they have to,” said Gale Carson Jones with MLGW.

The burly, brisk, and blistering blasts of wind snapped trees as though they were toothpicks.

“There's a lot of ice on the trees and the wind blowing is knocking the trees down. They are falling into our power lines,” said Carson Jones.

That's what happened at Michael Taylor's house in Frayser. The power went out around 8 Sunday night.

Taylor has two small children.

“How did you keep your babies warm?” asked WREG’s Elise Preston.

“They slept in the bed with me, we had to snuggle up,” replied Taylor.

Carson Jones says this storm is the toughest they've seen all winter when it comes to outages.

“All season we were told ‘Memphis is going to get hit, Memphis is going to get hit.’ We dodged the bullet, this time we did not. We have ice everywhere,” said Carson Jones.

It was so tough, utility workers from all over the country, Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, and Alabama are in town helping. Most of the help is in the northern part of Shelby County, where the most outages are.

Carson Jones says it could be a few days before some folks get their power turned back on.

“I know it's difficult to ask our customers to be patient, but we're working as fast as we can,” said Carson Jones.

Taylor says his kids can't wait. In the meantine, they are headed to his sister’s house.

MLGW says don’t assume an outage has been reported. Call (901)544-6500 if you are without power.

Storm restoration updates as of 6:20 p.m.:

  • Currently, there are about 17,000 customers without power.
  • MLGW has restored power to more than 45,000 customers.
  • Downed trees weighed with ice and power lines are the primary cause of these outages; damage is spread across Shelby County with more damage occurring north of I-40, in the Raleigh/Frayser and Shelby Forrest areas.
  • MLGW is estimating full restoration to take several days.
  • MLGW crews are working 16-hour shifts in an effort to restore power.
  • Fifteen mutual aid crews from Alabama, Indiana, Missouri and will begin assisting
  • MLGW crews with restoring outages Tuesday morning.
  • MLGW's Customer Care Center will also be open until 7 p.m. to assist customers.

Customers are reminded to call the following numbers:

  • · To Report an Outage: 544-6500
  • · To Report an Emergency (such as downed lines or gas leaks): 528-4465
  • · All Other Inquiries: 544-MLGW (6549)

Outage numbers can be tracked via MLGW's outage map at


  • Jacob Jingle

    Mglw is the most ineffectual and inefficient companies on the planet. Anyone who works for this company should be embarrassed

    • MikeBarret

      What is the name of the utility you run that serves 3/4 of a million people without problem? I want to switch.

      • The sky is falling.

        He’s talking about ” MGLW..”…Who is intelligent? Probably a product of the Memphis school system, where spelling is not so important.

    • The sky is falling.

      Another MLGW customer who had his lights cut off because he could not use his EBT card to pay his bill. While you were in bed last night they were working in the bitter wind, rain and cold….why don’t you cut them a little slack?. For the most part they do a fine job and I have lived in the Memphis area since 1982.

      • Jacob Jingle

        Why I do not cut them slack is simple. My neighbor is a MLGW supervisor. His power was on that night ours was not on for 5 days. Yeah I should cut them some slack. Especially instead of reading my meter, those thieves are charging me the same thing I paid last month. MLGW workers are ineffective and inefficient. How efficient was it to come turn the power back on at 1 house then leave and have to come back? It was not efficient at all. No other company on the planet would send out a crew to half a$$ finish a job then leave and come back 4 times. They would go broke operating like that except a power company. But no matter, I will be installing solar and wind this week and you and your MLGW butt buddies can shove it.

  • Hard Truths

    I am NO fan of Memphis, but MLGW does a good job. They are one of the few First World quality agencies in Memphis.

    Memphis was built on a forest, much of which has not been cut down. We will always have tree branches falling on power lines. It’s part of the price we pay for the forested parts of Memphis being pretty.

    • Magilla Gorilla

      Then get with the times and start burying the lines…I have about 4 inches of sleet in my yard and the power never went out.

      • MikeBarret

        I have a bit less, more like 3 inches, my power never went out either. I’m in Memphis and all my lines are under ground.

  • bam80

    Not efficient enough? Really! When the lights go off its not as easy as flipping a switch. Workers are out in inclement weather busting their tails to get power back as quickly and safely as possible. Being pulled away from their families for countless hours to help yours. So before you get too quick to put your foot in your mouth again.. just think about that!

  • Truckin_Gal

    My family and I been without power since Sunday 9 pm. We called MLGW Monday morning and they told us their doing their best to get out here. Okay Tuesday rolled around and called again and asked when would they get out here cause we have power lines and transformer has fallen in our driveway?? She said well their doing their best. By Tuesday late afternoon my husband called again and this time she hung Up on him??? Really??! WOW!!’ Ok so today I called and I asked when will they be here?? She said it might be sat or Sunday???? What!!! Tuesday MLGW was not even a half of mile directly behind our house trying to restore the power to the houses in my neighborhood and they did not come to the other side of the street and restore the power here which it’s not even a half of mile and we have been very patient with MLGW. So to bam80, your talking about them being away from their families and all. Okay yes, they are.. How many times a year are they away from their families?? Is only when the weather is bad?? I am a mother, a wife and a truck driver. I have a 6 year old son that I’m away from because I deliver freight from state to state but wait u don’t hear me bitching about that do u and we truck drivers drive in all kinds of weather all year long!!! Trucks move America.. Now maybe you should think about it. MLGW got one messed up system.. Oh wait, u work for them don’t u.. Feel sad for u. Maybe u shod think about it before you put your foot in your mouth.

  • 911 Agency

    I worked for a 911 agency in the Memphis area, I must speak out to the public on this emergency situation. This is now Wednesday and we are still receiving several, several calls from out citizens who are still without power. We contact MLGW to find out the status of these areas still without and they can not even work well with emergency agencies on this winter storm. MLGW should be able to at least provide emergency agencies who are receiving numerous phone calls for us to give our citizens intelligent answers. Oh by way, what happen to other area Power Agencies coming from other states to assist. I have not seen them yet. I think that this is a definite County wide emergency and we should be getting emergency help. MLGW is working 16 hr. shifts, that is not good enough in this emergency situation. Oh also these crews are being paid very well for being out working 16 hrs.’ I assure you of that.. Most of these guys make around 80,000 to 100,000 a year. Pull it up its public information. The citizens deserve better service from MLGW. I am a public servant and I understand being away from families. I work days, nights and weekends, so I really don’t have any sympathy for the MLGW crews. They are doing there job and they are being paid very well. Where is the assistance they told the citizens they were going to get. They really need to examine the way they handle emergency situations and they need to be more informative to other emergency agencies and to the citizens of this area. MLGW call for help and this time really call them, don’t tell the citizens you have called when you have not.

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