Preparing to lose power during upcoming winter weather

LITTLE ROCK (KATV)--Businesses are booming from the wintry weather mix we're expecting. Airmasters Heating and Air Conditioning are seeing an increase in calls for generators.

Airmasters' General Manager David Holliman said, they ordered more portable generators, but they're not guaranteed to arrive before the storm hits because they're coming from Wisconsin.

However, you can still purchase some at local retail store, but Holliman said if you're not experienced, you risk the chance of frying up some of your electronics if too many are plugged into your portable generator.

If you're looking at purchasing a whole house generator, Holliman said it could take up to a week before it's installed and ready to go. He adds plumbing and wiring is necessary for a whole house generator.

Last year's storm put more than 260,000 Arkansas homes and businesses in the dark.

However, this time around some people plan to keep their power on.

"We've had probably three to four quotes a day on whole house generators, I've got three on the board for today and people are already calling for tomorrow," said Holliman.

One whole house generator can run upwards of $12,000. Portable generators range from $500 to $3500; however the cheapest way is just to ride out the storm.

"It can be a convenience thing, and that's the majority of it, but when it comes to medical devices or food spoilagethings like that, that's something you have to look on an individual basis," added Holliman.

It's not just homeowners with plans in place; Entergy Arkansas spends around $20 Million per year trimming trees to avoid power outages.

"A tree limb the size of a golf club just hitting the line can take out 5,000 people," said Entergy Spokesperson, Sally Graham.

As freezing rain could soon become our worst nightmare, it's all hands on deck at Entergy as they monitor the approaching storms and prepare.

"All of our employees are on storm alert and you know our day to day jobs change when a major storm hits, so this is also something we drill on," added Graham.

Entergy used social media to reach out to customers' last year. Graham said it was a great tool and they will continue using it.

If your power does go out, make sure you report it.