Power outages can happen at any time. Utility companies will do their utmost to restore power as soon as possible, but outages caused by natural disasters may last days or even weeks. If you happen to lose the lighting in your home, make sure you're prepared by following the tips listed below.
How to Stay Safe During Power Outages
1. Keep Emergency Equipment
Prepare for a power outage in advance by having basic emergency equipment available. Keep a well-stocked first aid kit. Have an emergency stash of prescription medicines on hand. Make sure your pantry has plenty of non-perishable foods, as well as enough food for any pets. Ready a supply of bottled water, basic toiletries, and blankets. Ensure everyone in your household knows where to find these items so they're easy to retrieve, especially if you need to evacuate your home in a rush.
2. Organize Food Supplies
Beyond keeping a supply of non-perishable foods in a cool, dry place, take stock of your refrigerator. Refrigerators keep your food cold at least four hours after the power goes out if they’re kept closed, and freezers stay cold even longer. Consume perishables first to minimize spoilage and contamination. For prolonged power outages, extend the usable life of foods by storing them a cooler packed with ice or snow. Avoid leaving food outside even in cold temperatures, as this will attract wildlife.
3. Don’t Use Candles
Minimize the risk of fire by using rechargeable or battery-powered flashlights for lighting instead of candles. If you want to power your home with a generator, follow the correct safety procedures to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning and other operational risks. Refrain from using gas stovetops or ovens to heat your home during the outage, as these present a fire hazard.
4. Unplug Electrical Appliances
When power is out, remember to shut off and disconnect appliances, equipment, and electronics from their outlets. Power surges or spikes can damage anything that’s still plugged in when the electricity comes back on. If the outage was accompanied by flooding, stay away from areas where electrical outlets are submerged in water to avoid electrocution.
5. Find the Safest Location
Stay inside your home unless evacuation is necessary; even if any weather event is over, downed or damaged power lines present a hazard. If you're able, check on your neighbors, especially if they have young children or vulnerable older adults. If the power outage happens in the dead of winter or the peak of summer and you’re unable to tolerate extreme temperatures, consider going to a community location for protection.
Whether you have a power outage or another electrical problem in your home, the licensed electricians from Andy’s Electric in Salisbury Mills, NY, will help. They’ve provided excellent electrical work on home wiring and lighting throughout Orange County for over 35 years. These lighting contractors work rapidly and provide detailed quotes, so you'll be sure to stay in budget. To schedule service, call (845) 416-6936 or visit the website for details.