13 important things to do when the power goes out!
You are in the middle of the fiercest storm this year and you were caught by surprise. It’s 5 p.m. and the sky is as dark as it will be at dusk. At it’s worst the Thunder shakes your home, the rain plasters the window so hard you think they may break, and then the lights begin to flicker. It’s now safe to anticipate your home’s loss of power. Sure enough it goes out moments later as do quick screams from your children.
Some people experience stress and panic whenever this happens. Whether they were caught off guard by the storm or were otherwise overconfident in the power company’s ability to keep a constant flow of power to their home, they find themselves unprepared and nervous. No lights, no TV, no microwave, no way to charge their mobile devices. They scramble around trying to find spare candles or flashlights. Did they have a charge on their phone? No? Then Que the mini panic attack. But there doesn’t have to be one.
Depending on the severity of the storm you may lose power for a few hours or a few weeks. As long as you know what to do it does not have to be a major disruption. Above All else remain calm and keep your family members calm. Follow and employ this list of things to do below to ensure your loss of power is no loss at all.
1. First and foremost create a “power outage supply box”. It should always be the first thing you go to when the power goes out. In it you should store matches, candles, flashlights, batteries, glow sticks, an emergency radio and whatever else you deem important. Keep it somewhere accessible at all times, especially in the dark. If you don’t have a go-to cache of supplies somewhere when the power goes out, create one today.
2. Give everyone in your family a flashlight or glow sticks. If they need to move around, you don’t want them doing so in the dark.
3. Fire up several emergency candles. Place them in holders to refrain from tipping over accidentally. A power outage / fire combination could be a total disaster.
4. Make sure your pets are accounted for and indoors. Then start securing your home. Lock all windows and doors that can be accessed by a potential Thief. They work best in the darkness and take advantage of natural disasters.
5. Turn on the emergency radio. Most local news Affiliates will announce the power outage, but emergency alerts often give a greater level of detail. Cell phones now often come with an emergency alert updates as well so maximize your phone’s battery by switching it to a low power consumption mode if possible.
6. If it’s cold enough to Warrant a heater and you lost your primary method of heat, close the doors to the rooms you will not use. If you can spare the blankets, cover your windows as well and keep your family together in one room until you can work out your home’s heating issues.
7. If you have a portable generator get it started. Generators create carbon monoxide so never ever run one in your home. Depending on your generators power output you may only be able to run so many utilities or components at once. There is presently a great deal going on over at Amazon for backup generators here.
8. When you are outside go look around. Maybe your neighbors have power which means only a few smaller lines are affected. Check on your neighbors as well. They may be elderly, in need of Aid and/or lacking supplies. Make sure they have the basic supplies and the same knowledge you have in relation to the disaster.9. Give your family members the task of unplugging any electronics that may be damaged from the power surge when the power comes back on. Video game systems, computers and other devices that are sensitive to an influx of power. This should be a good task to assign to the little but able family members as it keeps them busy and feeling useful.
10. Employ an alternative power source to keep your mobile devices charged. They may be your only method of gathering Intel on the surrounding disaster. A car charger or solar device charger instantly comes to mind.
11. Call the power company. They should be able to give you an estimated time that the power should return.
12. If the power is going to be out for more than a day or two you may want to determine how you are going to access a secondary water source. If you depend on power to obtain water it may be wise to fill your sinks and bathtubs with clean water now.
13. Keep the doors to your fridge and freezer closed at all times unless necessary. The food in the fridge will stay cool for 4 hours so eat whatever is in the fridge first. The food in the freezer will last longer, up to 24 hours. Once the food thaws you only have so long to consume it before it becomes a health risk.
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