Take a few minutes to be prepared

Even with the best planning, occasional power outages do occur.  Prepare now so you’ll be ready in a hurry if the unexpected happens:

Make a storm kit with things you will need if the power goes out. Keep enough supplies for at least three days. Include a battery-powered radio and a flashlight (one for each family member), along with a supply of batteries to run them. Also gather nonperishable food, a manual can-opener, bottled water, matches and candles, personal medications, warm blankets and a first-aid kit. Don’t forget baby formula and pet food, if needed.

Customers with life-support equipment

If you or someone in your household relies on electrically operated life-support equipment, have a backup plan in case of a prolonged outage.

  • Make sure you have an alternate source of electric power such as a battery backup system, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) or a properly installed generator that can sustain your life-support equipment
  • Keep emergency telephone numbers handy (doctor, fire, police and ambulance)
  • Have a plan for vacating your home (safely) during a prolonged outage

If you know a storm is on its way (and have extra time to prepare)

  • Set your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings a half day before the storm (remember to return the settings to their normal position as soon as electricity is restored)
  • Pick up (or make) extra ice – ice helps maintain temperatures in your freezer and refrigerator
  • Fill your bathtub with water for use in flushing the toilet – just a bucket of water is all that’s needed for flushing
  • Fill your car’s gas tank
  • Fully charge your mobile phone
  • Have some extra cash on hand (credit/debit card machines run on electricity)

You can find more detailed information about preparing for the unexpected online at www.redcross.org.