Be Prepared If The Power Goes Out
There are several basic things any house needs to be prepared if the power goes out – both winter and summer!
- First, know where your circuit breakers are located and how to check to see if a breaker switch has been tripped.
- Have a number of flashlights with fresh batteries on hand and know where they are located. Consider having a plug-in flashlight that remains charged until you need it. A good place to keep it plugged in is in a dark hallway outlet.
- Have spare batteries on hand also – recycle the old ones instead of throwing in the trash.
- Have a battery-powered radio or television to listen to news and weather announcements. If you don’t have those, a quick trip to your car will give you a radio to listen to. Of course, it goes without saying – do not run your car in your garage – pull outside or at the very least, open the garage door.
- Keep the emergency number of your electric company handy in case you need to call. Remember to stay away from any downed electrical lines.
- Have an ice chest available to store needed medications or food that must remain cold. Have “blue ice” freezer packs reach for the ice chest.
- Have a regular, hard-wired telephone, not just a cordless model, and a charged cell phone. Unless the telephone lines or cell towers are down, you will have telephone service.
- If you use electricity for water, such as a well with an electric pump, have enough water available to last a couple of days. A good rule to follow is to have one gallon per person per day for drinking and cooking.
- If you have a back-up generator, be sure it is installed by a licensed electrician and approved by your utility company. Check with your local building department to see if a permit is needed for the installation. Make sure the system has an automatic breaker that disconnects the house from the power company’s regular electrical lines while it is running.
- Last of all – have a disaster plan for your family and keep a household first aid kit nearby.
If you follow these steps, you will surely be prepared if the power goes out!