Are you prepared to handle a blackout if one hits your area? Here are some good steps to take to help you prepare for a power outage.
Put Together an Emergency Kit
It’s dangerous to stumble through your home during an emergency when it’s completely dark. Put together an emergency kit in a duffel bag or plastic storage box while the lights are still on. Store your kit in a location where you and your family can easily access it during an emergency.
Flashlights and Batteries Help Prepare for a Power Outage
Buy flashlights for every member of the family and add them to your emergency kit. Simply having a flashlight will help most family members feel better while the lights are out. Stock up on plenty of extra batteries in case you need to use your flashlights during an extended blackout.
Purchase an emergency radio as you prepare for a power outage. A radio is useful when you need to tune into weather conditions or evacuation notices during a natural disaster. Buy a hand crank radio or one that runs on solar power.
Stock Up On Water
Each person in your family needs at least one gallon of drinking water per day. Make sure you have enough bottled water to last at least a week for everyone in your family, including pets.
Have Plenty of Non-Perishable Food
Make sure you have plenty of shelf-stable staples, like dried fruit, jerky, and nuts in case of a power outage. Keep your pantry stocked with necessities and a few of your favorite treats. These are the best types of food to keep around in case there’s an emergency:
- Grains and rice (if you have a way to prepare them)
- Canned beans
- Chips, crackers, and bread
- Peanut butter
- Canned veggies and fruit
- Protein bars
Prepare for a Power Outage: Food Thermometer
A closed refrigerator will keep your perishable food safe for at least 4 hours. A freezer keeps food frozen for up to 48 hours without electricity if the door remains closed. Put a food thermometer into your emergency kit so that you don’t risk eating spoiled food.
Make a Plan For Staying Together
Decide which room your family should gather in if you experience a power outage. Select one person who is responsible for bringing the emergency kit into that room so that everyone can grab their flashlights. If the power outage happens during the winter, you’ll be warmer when everyone is together in the same space.
Buy a Generator
The best option for dealing with power outages is buying a generator. Even a smaller generator that can at least power your refrigerator and a couple of lights will make it easier to endure the situation.
Additional Tips to Prepare for a Power Outage
Make it a habit to keep a full tank of gas in one vehicle and some cash on hand. Practice manually opening and closing the garage door. Keep your mobile phone charged at all times. Use candles safely. Always have a fully-stocked first aid kit on hand.
When you prepare for a power outage, you’ll be better equipped to remain safe if one occurs.