Before the Storm

Our emergency line is available 24 hours a day.

Montana: 888-467-2669  |   South Dakota/Nebraska: 800-245-6977   |   In case of a life-threatening emergency, dial 911.

If a heavy snow, wind or an ice storm is in the forecast, the time to prepare is before the storm hits.

  • Ensure all your electronic/mobile devices are fully charged.
  • Charge portable charging devices, such as battery banks.
  • If you have an emergency power source, such as a generator, learn how to use it properly.
  • If you depend on well water, fill jugs and other containers for an emergency supply.
  • Prepare an emergency outage kit.
  • Have a portable radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio on hand to monitor important information.
  • Visit our outage map for the latest outage information.
  • Follow us on social media for updates.

Generator safety tips

Portable generators can be useful during a power outage. However, it’s crucial that they are used safely.

  • Have a licensed electrician perform the wiring needed to connect the generator to your internal electric circuits. This typically will include installation of a “switch” or control feature that will accommodate disconnecting your residence (electrically) from the NorthWestern Energy distribution system while your generator is in use.
  • Proper installation will protect your internal wiring, the generator, and provide the safest environment for all involved, including linemen working to restore power during an outage.
  • Do not connect the output of your generator directly to your house wiring or service panel! This can create electrical back feed to the NorthWestern Energy distribution system and put field service crews in jeopardy of receiving severe or fatal electric shocks.
  • Read and understand the manufacturer’s instructions very carefully before connecting the generator to any electrical circuits.
  • Plug electrical appliances into the generator using a heavy-duty extension cord.
  • Never run a generator inside your home or an enclosed area. When used in confined spaces, portable generators can produce high levels of carbon monoxide (CO) within minutes.