Makes Reporting Streetlight Outages Easier

MERRILLVILLE, Ind., Jan. 17, 2011 — (PRNewswire) — Reporting a non-working streetlight just became easier, thanks to a new online tool launched by Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO).

Customers noticing a streetlight that is broken or burned out can conveniently visit and submit a request to have it fixed.  An interactive map identifies all of the streetlights owned or maintained by NIPSCO.  So, if a customer does not have the exact pole number, they still will be able to search for the streetlight by address or location.

"The availability of this new tool is just one of the many ways we're working to continuously improve the services and support we provide for our customers," said Karl Stanley, vice president of commercial operations for NIPSCO.  "More importantly, the enhancements we've made to simplify reporting a non-working streetlight help keep our communities safer."

The new functionality, developed by iFactor Consulting, uses a combination of NIPSCO's geographic information system (GIS) and Microsoft Bing Maps.

When a streetlight is reported, NIPSCO receives an incident report that includes all details related to the streetlight outage.  The report contains such details as the streetlight pole number, address, wattage and light type, as well as information reported by the customer, including their name, contact information and additional notes about the outage.  With this information, NIPSCO can quickly route the ticket to the appropriate department for repair.  If the customer provides an email address, NIPSCO will notify the customer once the streetlight has been repaired.

The online tool also provides a status of the light, in case someone else has already reported the outage.  For those customers who are unable to access the online tool, they can still call our 24-hour customer service center to report the streetlight at 1-800-464-7726.

NIPSCO is the first utility in Indiana to offer this online application for reporting streetlight outages.

iFactor Consulting develops software products and provides premier consulting services to the utility industry.  Its web and mobile utility customer communications product suite includes Storm Center for online and mobile outage communications and Notifi for proactive and interactive customer communications using 2-way texts, email, voice, and smartphones.  iFactor also offers, a hosted solution for the management of outdoor light repair requests.  iFactor Consulting has a proven track record delivering leading edge communications solutions for large and small utilities throughout North America.

NIPSCO, with headquarters in Merrillville, Ind., is one of the 10 energy distribution companies of NiSource Inc. (NYSE: NI).  With over 712,000 natural gas customers and 457,000 electric customers across the northern third of Indiana, NIPSCO is the largest natural gas distribution company, and the second largest electric distribution company, in the state.  NiSource distribution companies serve 3.8 million natural gas and electric customers primarily in seven states.  More information about NIPSCO is available at .

SOURCE Northern Indiana Public Service Company

Northern Indiana Public Service Company
NiSource Inc.
iFactor Consulting
Nick Meyer, NIPSCO Communications Manager
Phone: +1-219-647-6556


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