Regardless of the time of year, power outages happen. Whether its severe thunderstorms and wind in the summer, or snow and ice in the winter, trees and utility lines can fall putting us all in the dark. While an inconvenience, it’s a good idea to follow power outage preparation to ensure staying safe until your power is restored.
With hurricane season upon us, it is common to experience high winds and torrential rains which can mean a likely power outage that may last a few hours, days or even weeks. Because Mother Nature is unpredictable, it is recommended you plan ahead for worst case scenario situations by following some basic guidelines:
- Gas Up- Before the power goes out or there is a likelihood of losing power, it is recommended you gas up your vehicle. Once gas stations lose electricity, no fuel can be pumped so make a mad dash to the nearest gas pump to fill up. Keep in mind that the gas stations that do have power will most likely have lines of people waiting and could run out of fuel.
- Charge Up- In our electronic based society, you should charge up all of your electronics including computers and phones before there is a power outage or probability of one. Invest in a car phone charger so that if you should lose electricity, you can still charge your phone. Also, there are many portable chargers in a variety of price ranges to consider.
- Stock Up- Head to the grocery store to stock up on non-perishable food items and water in case of a power outage. Another way to keep refrigerated food cold is to stock up on ice bags that you can put into a cooler or even your washing machine in an effort to preserve food that otherwise could spoil.
- Gather- When there is a threat of a power outage, gather all flashlights, candles, and portable radios and make sure you have extra batteries on hand. You never know how long you may be without power.
- Refrain- Once power is lost, refrain from opening your refrigerator/freezer. By keeping the doors closed, the food in the refrigerator will stay cold for up to 24 hours and the freezer for 48 hours.
- Fill Up- If there is a threat of power outages and you have well water, you should fill up your bathtub with water. Without power, you won’t be able to flush toilets.
- Wrap Up- During the winter months, losing power means getting cold. This means you, your pipes, and home in general; So, gather plenty of warm blankets to stay warm, weather-strip all doors and windows to keep cold air out, and wrap pipes in insulation to prevent pipes from freezing.
- Purchase- There are a wide array of generators you may consider, some of which may be in your price range. With a generator, you can run basic necessities regardless of a power outage.
Losing power is always a dreaded inconvenience and when Mother Nature strikes, you need to be prepared. Being prepared won’t prevent it from happening but will hopefully keep you safer and more comfortable until your power is restored.