Wednesday, August 23, 2017

MLGW Offers Weatherization Expo

M.I.N.E. (MLGW in Neighborhoods Everywhere) will host a weatherization expo at the Glenview Community Center, 1141 S. Barksdale, on Thursday, August 24. The event is from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in an EnergySmart workshop to learn how to reduce energy usage and will receive an MLGW Energy Conservation kit. Attendees will also get information about MLGW’s Max Impact Home Weatherization Loan Program that provides low-interest loans up to $2,500 for home weatherization improvements.

Applications for Max Impact will be taken at the Expo. To apply on site, please bring photo identification and verification of income for all homeowners. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

#Eclipse2017 is upon us

On Monday, August 21, thousands upon thousands will be watching as a total eclipse tracks across the United States, from coast to coast, for the first time since 1918, according to NASA. In the Greater Memphis area, about 93 percent of the sun will be blocked by the moon, starting around 11:53 a.m., reaching peak darkness around 1:23 p.m. and ending shortly before 3 p.m., according to projections by Vox. (See their interactive map.)

Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division is preparing for the eclipse, which is raising awareness about the solar power generation. Tennessee ranks 24th in the nation for solar installations, according to Solar Energy Industries Association. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is also a proponent of solar power, purchasing power from approximately 3,000 customer-owned solar generation sites across the region, including more than 80 in Shelby County—the largest of which is a 1 MW solar farm at Agricenter International.  The eclipse’s impact on solar generation output will be similar to a very cloudy day, with decreased generation while the moon blocks the sun.  It’s important to realize that solar generation represents a tiny portion of TVA’s power supply, so TVA and MLGW will continue to provide reliable power.

At best, 93 percent of the sun will be blocked by the moon for Greater Memphis area viewers. That’s why looking directly at the sun is discouraged. Here are some other safety tips from NASA:

*The only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters, such as “eclipse glasses” or hand-held solar viewers. Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun; they transmit thousands of times too much sunlight.

*Refer to the American Astronomical Society (AAS) Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers (link is external) page for a list of manufacturers and authorized dealers of eclipse glasses and handheld solar viewers verified to be compliant with the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard for such products.

*Always inspect your solar filter before use; if scratched or damaged, discard it. Read and follow any instructions printed on or packaged with the filter.

*Always supervise children using solar filters.

*Stand still and cover your eyes with your eclipse glasses or solar viewer before looking up at the bright sun. After looking at the sun, turn away and remove your filter — do not remove it while looking at the sun.

*Do not look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device.

*Similarly, do not look at the sun through a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while using your eclipse glasses or hand-held solar viewer — the concentrated solar rays will damage the filter and enter your eye(s), causing serious injury.

* Solar filters must be attached to the front of any telescope, binoculars, camera lens, or other optics.

* Outside the path of totality, you must always use a safe solar filter to view the sun directly.

*If you normally wear eyeglasses, keep them on. Put your eclipse glasses on over them, or hold your handheld viewer in front of them.

Additional safety information can be located at

Friday, August 11, 2017

MLGW Observes National Call 811 Day

Reminding customers to call Tennessee811 hotline before digging

Some numbers you know by heart. 811 should be one of them. After all, it’s almost as easy to remember as 911. And it’s a good way to avoid a situation that might actually require an emergency call to 911, and no one really wants that.

Today is National 811 Day, August 11 (8/11), and it reminds the public that calling before you dig prevents damage to underground utilities such as gas and electric lines and keeps residents safe. MLGW is promoting National 811 Day on August 11 to increase awareness of National 811 Day in Memphis and Shelby County, and what it all means.

When residents call 811, underground utility lines on their property will be located free of charge. Tennessee law requires that individuals give notice to the 811 center three business days (72 hours) before digging begins so these utility lines can be located and marked. This service is free, and all residents who intend to excavate or have contractors excavate are required to call or have their contractor call 811.

Damage to utilities can occur during installation of a fence or mailbox, building a deck or additional room, and even gardening. “We want residents of Shelby County to realize that underground utility lines can be disturbed or damaged by common home improvement projects,” said Jerry Collins Jr., MLGW President and CEO. “Hopefully our promotion of National 811 Day will increase awareness of calling 811 before you dig, as well as the importance of natural gas safety.” Digging without calling can result in damage to underground utility lines, harm to residents, disruption of neighborhood service, and fines and repair costs for those responsible.

If residents hit or damage a utility line in the process of excavation, immediately call MLGW and stop digging. Remember that natural gas smells like rotten eggs. If residents smell this strong odor, they should evacuate the area right away and call 911 and MLGW’s emergency line (528-4465) after leaving the area. MLGW wants to remind residents that the best way to avoid dangerous situations is to always call 811 before you dig. For answers to frequently asked questions about Call 811 Before You Dig, check out Common Ground Alliance’s FAQs at More information on calling 811 and natural gas safety can be found on MLGW’s website at

Friday, August 4, 2017

MLGW President and CEO to retire at the end of the year

Effective December 19, 2017, Memphis Light, Gas and Water President and Chief Executive Officer Jerry Collins Jr. will retire as head of the utility.

“Working for MLGW and the City of Memphis has been a great experience, however, after 30 years of public service it is now time for me to spend time with my family.” Collins said. “I’d like to thank the 2,500-plus employees who I have enjoyed serving with to improve the quality of life for residents through the efficient and safe delivery of electricity, natural gas and water the last 10 years,” he added.

"I appreciate the excellent leadership and service that Jerry has provided over the years across several divisions of city government," said Mayor Jim Strickland.  "Because of his skill, the largest publicly owned utility in the country gives customers the best service at the lowest cost, and continues to protect our most valuable resource—our drinking water.  I wish Jerry well in his retirement."

Collins has served as President and CEO of MLGW since 2007. He is the 10th person to lead the utility. A native Memphian, Collins previously served as Director of Public Works for the City of Memphis. 

MLGW Preserves Sanitation Icon Joe C. Warren’s Home

MLGW purchased the home of AFSCME Memphis Local 1733 member Joe C. Warren in June.

In honor of Mr. Warren, who coined the term " I am a man”, and other sanitation workers, MLGW plans to preserve and maintain Warren’s home at 968 Meagher. 

Warren held organizational meetings at his home on the corner of Meagher & Dunkley. Dunkley has been given the honorary street name of Joe C. Warren Boulevard and soon Warren’s house will get a historical marker.

MLGW is extremely pleased that Warren’s home will serve as a gateway to its expanding North Service Center. Asbestos has been removed from the home and new siding has been installed.

Warren marched alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1968 Sanitation Strike in Memphis. Warren, along with eight other original sanitation workers, was honored at the White House by President Barack Obama April 2011. They were also inducted into the Department of Labor's Labor Hall of Fame.

Warren, a WWII veteran, was fired along with 32 others by the City of Memphis Sanitation Department in 1965 for alleged employment violations.

Warren passed away at the age of 91 in July 2012.

Pilot Safety Inspection Program Begins August 7

To ensure gas appliance safety, MLGW offers Pilot Safety Inspections through February 28, 2018. Customers are encouraged to begin scheduling appointments on August 7. Inspection appointments between September 2 and September 30 are free. After September 30, inspections incur a $55 fee which covers up to three gas heating appliances. Each additional appliance will be an extra $16. The service is free to physically challenged customers and seniors (60 years and older).

To schedule an appointment, customers can call 820-7878 to choose a convenient date and time. MLGW’s Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system can also be used to schedule appointments with the customer’s 16-digit account number.

Appointments can be scheduled for a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Saturday at one of the following time slots:
  • 8 a.m. – noon
  • noon – 4 p.m.
  • 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday appointments are either 8 a.m. – noon or noon – 4 p.m.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Giving the gift of life

Employees who work at MLGW’s Tupelo #8 at the North Service Center know how to roll up their sleeves and give a pint. During a recent two-day blood drive, 42 donors gave blood – including 11 first-timers for Lifeblood. The collective contributions means donors saved 117 lives. 
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