As our rain and windstorm season gets underway and unplanned outages occur, one of the most urgent phone calls we receive is for people with medical devices. We encourage you to discuss power outages with your provider and make plans for backup power for critical medical devices. SafeElectricity.org offers these further suggestions to ensure you are safe when power outages occur.
At home, have enough nonperishable food, water and medical supplies/medicines for 72 hours. FEMA and the CDC suggest storing one gallon of water per person per day. Have cell phones and chargers, as well as backup charger sources, ready. Gather important documents and medical records. Protect your pets and make sure you have enough supplies for them as well. Also have these items ready: a first-aid kit, a flashlight and batteries, hand sanitizer, blankets and warm clothing.
Weatherproof your home ahead of winter by caulking windows and doors and looking for other air leaks that need attention. Inspect chimney flues for wood stoves or wood-burning fireplaces. Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of your home. Protect pipes from freezing.
Prepare your vehicle with an emergency kit. A kit typically includes battery booster cables, an ice scraper, a portable shovel, flashlights, a signaling cone, backup batteries for the flashlight, roadside triangles, a reflective vest, a basic first-aid kit (add in what is needed for individual needs) and a cell phone charger.
In addition, stock your car or truck with gloves, a blanket, a rain poncho, wipes, rags, boots and a hat. It cannot hurt to also have bottled water and nonperishable snacks in your vehicle in case you get stranded.
Know that when the power goes out, we work hard to restore it safely and efficiently.